Playing baseball at a professional level is not as easy as it looks. There’s more to it than swinging a bat and catching a baseball. Few people get to make the cut. Many others don’t get as lucky.
There are over 2 million kids who play little league. Then, the numbers get crunched. About 471,025 of those 2 million kids end up playing baseball in high school. That 471,025 gets reduced even further to 31,264 athletes playing at the college level. To top it all off, only 806 people get chosen as draftees out of the 31,264 athletes. Just like that, 2 million becomes 806. Not all of the 806 draftees even get to make it to the big leagues. Some of those people only get to play in the Major Leagues for 1 game and then get sent back down. Other players become back-ups, and there are the every day players that are under average.
Sure, we get a bunch of really good players like Dustin Pedroia and Derek Jeter (I happen to be a Red Sox fan who admires Derek Jeter). However, the process of playing at the professional level is slim to none. So, how does it happen?
The answer is that the fame of being a baseball player is not the focus. There are many kids who dream of being baseball players, basketball players, or play another professional sport. The problem is that many of these people dream of the fame–the ability to make millions of dollars, sign baseballs, and go around the country.
In addition, there are baseball players who play for a few years, then have a bad year or two, and then gets sent down. That’s because some baseball players think about the fame they just got. Fame becomes the centerpiece of attention which results in bad performances.
Who wouldn’t want the fame? The problem is that we focus on fame. We don’t think about doing the things we love. We don’t think about the work that is involved to get the fame. You don’t accidentally end up in the World Series, and you don’t accidentally end up becoming a professional baseball player.
Fame is not a priority. Fame is a by-product.