Monday, August 15, 2011

Did The Arizona Diamondbacks Cost Jason Marquis His Career?

There's a thin line between competitiveness and recklessness. Yesterday Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Jason Marquis took a grounder off his leg and was in excruciating pain. After a couple of warm up tosses he felt good enough to stay in the game. A few pitches later Marquis hit a batter and fell to the ground. The diagnosis is a broken right shinbone that will sideline the Diamondback's pitcher for four to six weeks. Who's to blame for this fiasco?

You have to blame the Diamondbacks organization for this tragedy. Arizona leads the National League West by two games over the defending world champion San Francisco Giants and every game is precious. With the division title on the line they chose to listen to Marquis rather than take the necessary precautions regarding his health. Marquis was pumped up on adrenaline and would have said anything to stay in the game. A competitor at that level is not a reliable source when it comes to making a decision about an injury.

People (including myself) are quick to point out how much money professional athletes make and how fortunate they are to play a child's game for a living, but aside from all that most athletes play for the love of the game. They realize that their window of opportunity is small and if they don't seize the moment they may never have that chance again. In the case of Jason Marquis he did what 99% of major leaguers would have done given the same set of circumstances. Let's hope it's not a decision he will regret for the rest of his life.

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