Baseball players are by nature, and through environment, repetitive and routine based personalities. In many of the Padres video interviews, including Buddy Black, Chase Headley and Carlos Quentin, there is a sense of steadiness and of continuation in the way they speak. It pays to be methodical and to stay the course and not overreact to outcomes. I believe that’s why it is common in the MLB for players to develop intricate routines and rituals and furthermore have off the wall superstitions. Also I think being a successful player requires patience and an open mind to things that work. The .300 mark has always been a benchmark of a good hitter and an reasonable batting average target to aspire to stay above. But think about it, that means that a a good hitter, still fails most of the time, even when they do things the right way. That demonstrates that a hitter does not control the outcome, although we like to think about the event in terms of the batter hit the ball, or the pitcher threw the ball. Sometimes there are things outside of one’s hand that effect the at bat. I think, a player lifetime of dealing with this type of scenario over just lends to superstitions – as soon as something works, you keeping doing it.
As a fan, when you have zero control of over outcome, you can see really zany things. My editor challenged me to come up with some of my own, but I’m strangely normal I think. The whole type of thing reminds me of the one of the brewskie commercials, which I’ll omit the brand here, but are a series of fan superstition commercials with a bit of fun depicting fans doing really zany things like make tiny voodoo dolls of of the other team, or stare weirdly at the players and will them to win. The slogan is, its not weird if it works. I suppose I do that as a fan, I do help think positively for the home team, and I mentally try to curse the other team. I also help cheer the home team and boo close calls of any sort against the Padres. Actually, now I can think one of good one. For a brief time last season, whenever Jesus Guzman came up to bat I would pantomine the crucifix and cheer and then he’d do well. When I stopped, he started to falter, so it must have been linked!
And of course, there are also the rally caps. Wear your cap inside out, or on the side of your head so that the bill forms a crest on the head. Warning, there is strong magic at work here, so use this power carefully as it is to be performed during late innings when the Padres are down and need to start a rally. Rumor has it, that the more people that participate, the stronger the potency.