Before getting married and having a child, Scott Atchison occasionally succumbed to the stress of the job. As a starter in the Mariners farm system, he allowed the frustrations to tug away at him.
But he's adapted over time. These days, the Red Sox reliever shifts his focus to family time to alleviate his daily stress on the diamond.
"By the time we get to the apartment, we leave the baseball at the field," Atchison said of his family. "You can't drag it home with you or you'll stress yourself out over stuff. When I'm at the field, I worry about baseball, when I leave I don't worry about it. You have to get away from it."
Atchison learned that lesson early in his 20s. As he climbed up the Seattle farm system, the pressure to succeed continued to mount, forcing him to find distractions away from home to ease the burden.
When he was single, Atchison resorted to either playing golf or going out with buddies to escape the stress. Now, the 36-year-old enjoys playing with his daughter, Callie, and walking around Boston with his wife, Sarah, to pass the time.
"When I was younger, I took a lot of [the stress] home and I think getting married and having a kid has made it a lot easier," Atchison said. "Because good or bad, when I see my daughter smiling –– because she doesn't know [baseball] –– it helps me forget about it.
"Earlier on before my family, it could get tough at times and you don’t have anything else to take your mind off of it then."
Atchison has coped with it well this season, going 1-0 with a 1.17 ERA in 15 appearances out of the bullpen. He's tossed 23 innings for the Red Sox, and has only allowed three earned runs while striking out 17 batters.
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) is offering 100 healthy tips to celebrate Fenway Park’s centennial. Visit 100pitches.org to learn more.