By Pat Ahearne, Australian Baseball League Pitcher of the year
March 26, 1999
As anyone who has competed in athletics can say, the difference between the average athlete and the elite player is much more mental than physical. In an effort to bring my mental preparation for baseball to the same level as my physical preparation, I was introduced to EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) by Steve Wells, a psychologist based in Perth, Australia. Before working with Steve, I was able to perform well in training and some of the time in games, but I wanted to access my best performances more often and in the most pressure filled situations.
Steve and I worked together using EFT to lessen or eliminate the mental and emotional barriers preventing my consistently producing my best games as a pitcher. The results were astounding. I had more consistency, better command of my pitches, and accomplished it in big games with less mental effort. There is clear evidence in the numbers when you compare my ’98-’99 Australian Baseball League season statistics before EFT and after EFT:
Hits given up
Walks given up
Earned run average
With EFT, I found the mental edge that raises an athlete from average to elite. I used the techniques to capture the MVP of the Perth Heat and the Australian Baseball League Pitcher of the Year awards.
I am so amazed with the effectiveness of EFT that I’ve made it as important a part of my baseball routine as throwing or running or lifting weights. The title “Emotional Freedom Techniques”” certainly does fit.
Update on Pat Ahearne from Steve Wells
Pat Ahearne and I have continued to work by phone since he left Australia and returned to the US for the American baseball season, which has just finished. His results have continued to be quite remarkable, and he is continuing to use EFT to work through any issues which prevent him from being anything but his best, and from performing at his peak.
Upon leaving Australia at the end of our season, Pat was able to secure a position in the Atlantic League playing for Bridgeport. 6 games was all he pitched there before he was signed by the Seattle Mariners. His record at that point: 6 wins, 0 losses. Consider this quote from an article in the Connecticut Post at that time:
“Bluefish righthander Pat Ahearne didn’t panic when he found out a scout from the Seattle Mariners would be watching him pitch Sunday. In fact, Ahearne didn’t let the news affect him one way or another. There once was a time when information like that would evoke a plethora of emotions from Ahearne, but those days are behind him. Since working with a psychologist in Australia over the winter, Ahearne has taken a more relaxed approach to the game. The result: One month into the season, he’s one of the Atlantic League’s most dominant pitchers …”
(And it goes without saying that one of the primary techniques Pat and that psychologist have been using is EFT!)
The article continues:
“Pat’s got great stuff. He has a good, hard sinker”, Bluefish pitching coach Dave Osteen said. “He’s not going to overpower people. I don’t see why he can’t be in class AAA somewhere knocking on the door to the big leagues.”
That, in fact is the plan. Pat was then signed by the Mariners to play AA ball. Major League baseball, for the uninitiated, is AAAA. Players can be called up from AAA or AA to the majors, and Pat was hopeful that his time would come this season, but has had to be satisfied with completing the season playing AA.
He did however, manage to take out the league’s title for the lowest earned run average!
The New Haven Register reported it thus:
“Pat Ahearne finished his stint with the New Havens the same way he started. He won. And in the process Ahearne clinched the earned run average title in the Eastern league with just two days remaining in the season …”
“Ahearne was signed by the Seattle Mariners on June 11 and quickly became the ace of the Ravens staff while making his mark as one of the league’s best pitchers this season…”
Pat is now heading off to play ball in Venezuela and hopefully having a ball. His plans for next season? Major League Baseball. And why not?
Pat is one of those people who is so committed to his goal that he systematically seeks out and applies any and all strategies that he can see will help him to succeed. And he’s been quite willing to acknowledge the pivotal role that EFT has played in his current high level of success.
Update from Pat Ahearne: Durability and Endurance
I was looking for an article of mine in New Haven this season and stumbled across my testimonial and follow-up on your site. I just returned from a winter-ball assignment in Venezuela where I got another 40 innings pitched with a 2.O5 ERA (Earned Run Average). Things are progressing well and I am continuing to work over the telephone with Steve Wells.
I also have something to add that might further the worth of the techniques in the area of durability and endurance. I can best illustrate this with a comparison.
My longest season in terms of innings pitched prior to my ’98-’99 season in Perth [when EFT was first used] was 142 innings pitched in ’95 for Toledo (AAA Detroit Tigers). After that season I was physically and mentally drained and looked forward to a five month off-season.
Compare this to the stretch from November of ’98 to December of ’99 [during which time EFT was applied]: I pitched 87 innings in Perth followed by a combined 170 innings in Bridgeport and New Haven and finally another 40 innings in Venezuela for a total of 297 innings pitched in a 13 month span [this is over twice the innings pitched-without any sustained rest periods].
Add that to the thought that I feel physically and mentally strong and am confident I will be at my best again when spring training arrives in March on only 3 months rest from competitive situations.
Also, my earned run average during that 297 inning span was: Perth 2.16, Bridgeport 2.45, New Haven 2.61, Venezuela 2.05. All those numbers are over a full run better [over 30% improvement] than any season I had in my professional career. I can’t ask for much better results that have carried over the course of a long and taxing baseball season.
I just wanted to add that extra bit which is better seen from the end of the season perspective. If there is anything I can do to help you out, don’t hesitate to contact me. As Steve has said, I hope to help put EFT in the headlines.