DENVER – I’ve never fully understood why people go bungee jumping.
Voluntarily falling from high places, strapping yourself onto twisty-turny speed machines, or jumping over long distances on foot or in vehicle—y’know, for fun—has simply never appealed to me, though it clearly does to quite a few people.
Similar in function, in fact, likely located in a neighboring section of the brain, is the “reliever” drive.
What kind of person must it take to assume a job that brings little glory except when stakes, and responsibilities, are at their absolute highest? Who wants to walk the proverbial tight-rope-with-no-net? If you succeed, you made it to the other side; accomplishing what was supposed to be inevitable. Well done.
If you fail? You crash hard.
And then, and believe it or not we are just now getting to the hard part, you have to scrape yourself off the ground, climb that ladder, and try again.
Take, for example, the career of a reliever that every single member of the current Colorado Rockies bullpen could learn something from; Brian Fuentes.
If you were a Rockies fan before this decade, you are familiar with that name but it likely evokes a myriad of responses throughout different segments of the fanbase. Because the crashes are always more memorable than the time the guy simply walked the rope to the other side, many will recall his most pronounced failures.
Yet others will remember exactly why he was recently named as one of the 25 greatest players in history as part of the 25-year anniversary celebrations.
Like most of us, when the Rockies first put together their 2018 bullpen, he thought they were going to be something special. “When they picked up Davis and Shaw…I was just like, ‘they’re going for it.”