THE STRIKE ZONE
Sometimes Sports, Sometimes Sportsmanship
Have you ever stopped to think about whether professional athletes are actually friends?
On one hand, as we have always stated, it would behoove athletes in the same sport to recognize that they are all on the same team when it comes to being in the same union. There is no reason to fight with members of other teams within the same sport for that reason alone, let alone that it is just plain wrong. After all, they all want the same thing: a fair wage to play a game for a living.
But on the other hand, think about how players on the same team have to compete with not only the players in the other dugout or on the other sideline, but on their own team as well. If a player isn't performing well, he will usually be replaced by another player. It becomes a competition within the same team to make sure that playing time is earned so as to avoid the "business" of sports where a slumping athlete will be benched for someone who might produce.
A similar comparison might be two actors who are both auditioning for the same part. Or even just two professionals both trying to get the same job. Colleagues under the same heading (and perhaps in the same union) must now fight for work just to be on the proverbial playing field where the actual work might happen!
The common response to this is that "it's a business." The business is to produce the best possible product so that the bottom line continues to grow. Success is defined by the income brought in, not the quality of the work.
It's not something that is changed easily (or even needs to necessarily be changed). But it does deserve a second thought when it comes to trying to empathize with others. Perhaps some of the lessons learned in this conundrum can be extrapolated into our lives.
Baseball player, umpire, coach, fan; professional musician; founder, President & CEO of The OSIP Foundation, Inc.