Using Anger as a Tool

When talking about the mindset you need to have when pitching, most people say you need a level head (which is true) and you shouldn’t get to “pumped up”. However, sometimes a pitcher can be not “pumped up” enough. My question is, what are some ways for a pitcher to get pumped up? My problem is that I don’t get pumped up enough to go pitch. I’ve had people tell me to “get angry” before I pitch, but I’m just looking for advice.

The Yankees had a pitcher named Vic Raschi, one of the team’s Big Three pitching rotation. Away from the ballpark he was a pussycat, one of the nicest people you could ever hope to meet—but on the day he was scheduled to start you couldn’t go near him. When he got to the locker room to get dressed for the game he would sit in front of his locker and get madder and madder, working himself into an absolute fury—all of it directed at the other team and at the photographers and the newsmen who would try to talk to him. One time a cameraman snapped a photo of him, and apparently he was unusually sensitive to the flashbulb, because he couldn’t see for some six or seven minutes. When his vision finally returned he threatened to tear limb from limb anyone who tried it again! So the word got around: leave the Springfield Rifle strictly alone before and during the game!
He even got furious at his catcher, Yogi Berra.
This was probably the most extreme case—but it couldn’t hurt to get very angry at the opposition if you have to do it that way. I had a
different way; I used to imagine myself an absolutely evil sorceress with an arsenal of nasty pitches with which I would discombooberate, flummox, bewilder and bewitch the opposing batters, throwing sidearm and using the crossfire and cackling to myself every time I retired the side. :baseballpitcher:

I don’t know where I heard this line but it has stuck with me.

“Treat every outing as the most important outing of your career…while remembering that this is just a game.”

Every time I step on the mound is important. I intend to dominate no matter who I am facing. It’s a calm and focused intensity, though. Don’t let the game situation or the opponent you are facing dictate your psychological arousal. You dictate that - it comes from within. Each time out there is a chance to improve, and a chance to show yourself and everybody watching what you can do.

Darth Pitcher