Gritty Hustlesmith Hunter Pence. You will never be forgotten. (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images)
With last month's dust-up between Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins, manager Charlie Manuel, and the Philadelphia sports media about Rollins' failure to run out a pop-up, and the subsequent benching and dressing down from Manuel, there has been endless debate, online and elsewhere, about when it is appropriate not to run hard and go "all out" on a play with a low probability of success.
The Good Phight, with assistance from Eckstein-Erstad Industries, has prepared the following quiz to allow players to determine when and how much they should "hustle" in a given situation. That quiz is published below.
1. I am a Major League Baseball player, and I play for a team in:
a. New York, Philadelphia, or Boston
b. Chicago's North Side, Miami
c. Chicago's South Side, Baltimore, Washington, DC
d. Anywhere else
2. Height! I am:
a. 5'9" or below
b. 5'10 - 6'1"
c. 6'2 - 6'4"
d. 6'5" or above
3. I play the following position:
a. Shortstop, Second Base, Center Field
b. Third Base, Right Field
c. First Base, Left Field
d. Catcher, Pitcher
4. This term is used most often to describe me:
a. Naturally talented
5. How often do you smile during a game?
a. Many times during a game. Baseball is fun!
b. A few times here and there, once or twice a game at most.
c. Once every so often, a few times a week.
d. Never. I'm gritty and determined.
6. I am currently playing for a team that is...
a. More than eight games out of a playoff spot
b. Less than eight games out of a playoff spot
c. In first place by five or fewer games
d. In first place by six or more games
7. My salary for the current season is:
a. Top quartile for players at my position
b. Second quartile for players at my position
c. Third quartile for players at my position
d. Bottom quartile for players at my position
8. During the offseason, I plan to:
a. Hang with celebrities at nightclubs and other exotic hotspots
b. Work on building my side business(es) to prepare for life after baseball
c. Spend time with my family
d. Offseason? No such thing. 24/7/365, beastmode!
3 points for every "a."
2 points for every "b."
1 point for every "c."
0 points for every "d."
19 - 24: You'd better hustle! Everyone's watching you. Especially the children. This lazy, loafing, lolligagging isn't tolerated by the tough, knowledgeable fans in this town! We like lunchpail guys who play with heart! Your job is to get on-base, not to hog the spotlight from the real stars on the team.
14 - 18: You don't have to go all-out 100% of the time, but it wouldn't kill you to at least make faces so it looks like you're busting your hump out there.
7 - 13: You're a smart guy who knows when all-out effort is required and when you can coast a little bit and keep the powder dry for the real crucial situations. A real pro.
0 - 6: Take a load off! You're a run producer / middle-of-the-lineup hitter / catcher / pitcher. Don't bust it just to get to first base and clog up the bases. Take it easy and rest those achy knees!