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Spring training is a time for optimism. Every player reports to camp in great shape, coaches walk around with more pep in their step and everyone’s record resets to zero. Under the right circumstances, even the worst teams can convince themselves they are a contender entering the regular season.
It’s often the manager’s job to get them there. Around this time of year, managers prepare some type of motivational ploy to inspire their club. “Nothing is impossible. We can go from worst to first. This is our year!”
Those often take the shape of an emotional speech. Sometimes, managers will share a famous anecdote. Some war story where the odds were stacked against one side, but they still managed to overcome. Other times, the manager might enlist a team veteran to step in and perform a humorous skit. Whatever it takes to create the belief that the team can win.
That wasn’t enough for Miami Marlins manager Don Mattingly this year. Nope. Instead of simply giving a rousing speech in front of his players, Mattingly participated in an insane ritual to try and give his team an extra edge heading into the regular season. We’ll just let the video explain.
So… this happened. ????
— Miami Marlins (@Marlins) March 15, 2017
You may have questions, and that’s fair. What you see above is a large man smashing a cinder block on Mattingly’s chest. While the man wielding the sledgehammer does have experience with this type of thing, it’s safe to say Mattingly is willing to take some major risks to motivate his players.
That man, by the way, is Donnie Moore, a member of a group called Radical Reality. They are a religious group that specializes in spreading inspirational messages. Breaking cinderblocks on a baseball manager’s chest is just one of their specialties, according to their website:
They break bricks and bats, bend steel bars, rip phone books in half, and share a life changing message of hope!
Sounds pretty intense. Based on the video, though, it seems like they know what they’re doing. Mattingly seemingly escaped unscathed, though we would love to have taken his blood pressure after that ordeal.
At the same time, though, maybe Mattingly was much calmer than expected. Given the number of professional baseball players in the room, he was probably happy to have Moore swing the hammer.
Had Giancarlo Stanton stepped in, we imagine the Marlins would be looking for a new manager right now.
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