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Teddy Roosevelt speech used to fire up Nationals before Game 4

9:06 AM, Oct 12, 2012   |    comments
Teddy Roosevelt
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Reid Cherner, USA TODAY

Not being on the playoff roster means you don't carry a big stick. But it doesn't mean you have to speak softly.

After the Washington Nationals went down 2-1 to the Cardinals in the playoffs, Mark DeRosa decided to get presidential.

So bully for him for pulling out the "The Man in the Arena Speech" from Teddy Roosevelt. Even if Teddy didn't add the f-bombs.

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood...who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.

Writes James Wagner of the Washington Post:

"Since his days at the University of Pennsylvania, DeRosa would turn to those words before big games. This time, he felt he needed to share them....Players who weren't in the clubhouse came streaming in...DeRosa felt that his teammates, composed mainly of young players new to this stage, needed to hear something."

"With our backs against the wall, I wanted to say something that brought us together, a little band of brothers to go out and fight and see what happens," said DeRosa.

Pitcher Drew Storen called it "epic" and "stuff movies are made of."

DeRosa, a 15-year veteran with a .270 batting average, owns a World Series ring from when he played for San Francisco in 2010. 

USA TODAY

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