The physical you can train, the mental attitude you have to cultivate.
It needs a seed planted early in the year, tender nurturing through the early days to protect a fragile growing thing, on into a full grown solid mass that can be relied on when all else looks to be failing.
That is what the Red Sox have done this year, planted the seeds early and never wavered in their care and devotion to the never say die attitude. Combined with the physical ability to execute physically in a moment what is called for, you have the 2013 postseason Red Sox.
Game 2 of the ALCS was the epitome of the new Boston Red Sox mojo known as ThinkPoz.
Here we present our findings, three demonstrative examples of how this new mojo played out in their favor yesterday.
It was in the seventh inning when Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia began telling his teammates that something improbable was about to happen.
"This isn't over," he announced.
He made sure everyone in the dugout heard it. He didn't stop there, either. He told 'em how it was going to play out. "We're going to get into the bullpen," he said, "and we're going to beat 'em." He added something that also stuck.
Red Sox backup catcher David Ross relayed a story about how one supporter with choice seats over the Boston dugout never seemed to give up hope, loudly and repeatedly reminding the Sox how the New England Patriots earlier had pulled off a stunning 30-27 victory over the New Orleans Saints with five seconds left on the clock.
"This guy kept saying, 'You know what happened with the Patriots today,' literally from the fourth inning on," Ross said. "I was like, 'Well, that guy's got more hope than I do.' I threw him a ball after that inning because he was so positive."
Finally, MLB writer Doug Miller brings us the walk off hero Jarrod Saltalamacchia's thoughts going through the last at bat, taking it from the pop-up to Prince Fielder.
On the third pitch, Saltalamacchia swung and got a piece of the ball, but it was not what he wanted. He popped it up foul off first base. First baseman Prince Fielder drifted over toward the stands, looking like he had a bead on it. He settled under it. Saltalamacchia was hoping with everything he had that it would get into the crowd. It didn't.
But it glanced off Fielder's glove and gave the catcher and the Red Sox new life.
"I didn't think he was going to catch it," Saltalamacchia said, "and I think if you watch the replay, I was fist pumping when he did drop it. That's a big difference with men on third and one out and men on second and still one out. That was a big turning point, I think."
Porcello seemed to think so, too, because his next pitch was low and away and got away from catcher Alex Avila for a wild pitch.
The fifth pitch was the 94-mph fastball that Saltalamacchia shot past Iglesias, ending the game and starting a big party in Boston.
When you never say die, when you have practiced what you need to execute on the field enough to put it all down to muscle memory, then all that is left is to lean on that massive foundation of positive thinking and wait for the unthinkable to happen.
When the Red Sox ThinkPoz, it is always just a matter of time.
Eric is a contributing writer since 2013 and a true Overseas Fan of the Boston Red Sox living in the Netherlands. He's spent years on baseball fields around the world pitching. His weekends are now spent helping the next generations of pitchers to find their passion and love for the sport. More articles by Eric: https://www.redsoxlife.com/search/label/ericschabell