Late last week, Trevor Hoffman became the first player in Major League Baseball history to record 600 saves. After making a name for himself as one of the best closers in baseball with the San Diego Padres, like many players toward the end of their career, Trevor moved on after a long stint with his signature team and took his trademark change up to the Milwaukee Brewers before the 2009 season.
After recording 37 saves in 2009, Trevor struggled at the beginning of the 2010 season and Brewers manager Ken Macha decided to turn to rookie John Axford to close out games.
All too common in today's world is the talk of veteran players being "disrespected" in situations like this where a 27 year old rookie steps in. Many times a very public feud ensues, the true personality of a player shines through and a legacy is potentially tarnished.
Trevor Hoffman didn't take this route. In a true professional manner, he accepted the role that was given to him and tried to do it to the best of his ability to help his team win. But more than that, he turned his attention to helping his replacement succeed. In an Associated Press article, John Axford says, "In all honesty, he's meant everything to my development. He carries about his business perfectly. He's been the best mentor for me."
Learn a lesson from Trevor Hoffman. Accept whatever role you are asked to play and do it to the best of your ability. And don't act like you are too good or busy to help a teammate out.