Last night I was watching The World Series. I’m not a Tampa Bay Rays or a Los Angeles Dodgers fan, but I do love the game of baseball. I only watched a few innings, but it certainly was exciting. In the bottom of the fourth, Manuel Margot started the inning by drawing a lead-off walk. He proceeded to steal second base and because of an error by the short-stop, he narrowly advanced to third. Stealing second base was risky. His decision to go on to third might have been even riskier, but there he was safely on third with his team losing 3-2. Then he decided to take “risky” to a whole new level.
With runners on first and third, two outs, Margot decided to try and steal home. Just as a frame of reference, Margot is the first player to attempt to steal home in the World Series since 2002 and he is the first player to be caught stealing home in the World Series since 1991. Attempting to steal 2nd base happens all the time; attempting to steal home happens, well, almost never. This would be an even better story if Margot was successful, but he was not. The play couldn’t have been any closer, but Margot was, in fact, tagged out at the plate to end the inning.
Why am I sharing this story of failure? Not only was Margot thrown out to end the inning, but the Rays also lost the game and are down in the series 3-2. I’m sharing because not every risk pays off, that is true, but taking no risks at all is failure of another kind. What calculated risk are you willing to take today? We don’t need to take a “stealing home” kind of risk, but what about an everyday “stealing 2nd” kind? Think of a risk that you’ve been afraid to take. Is it a phone call or an email? I will argue that you have a lot less at stake than Game 5 of the World Series. Be brave! Take the darn risk! Look, Margot was a millisecond away from being safe!