The Five Tool Player

Five tool players are part of a rare breed, so rare, that most them are rarely forgotten, and commonly referred as remarkable. In basketball, a five tool player excels at the major statistical categories: points, rebounds, assists, steals and blocks. In baseball, a five tool player is recognized by excelling in average, power, speed, arm strength and defensive skills. In business a five tool player is that who can amass special skills in different areas of the company, being these; product, legal, systems, marketing and finance. To read more about these 5 tools, read my blog post on the Business and Sports Triangles. In both, business and in sports, players can leverage different skills into different players, but those who can do it all, the all around players are very rare to find, yet highly skilled. These type of players are the ones that make a difference, that change paradigms and challenge the unchallenged.

If there were a hall of fame for business owners, Steve Jobs, Donald Trump and Walt Disney would be a “shoe in”. In sports, halls of fame exist, and they are filled with great players, but only a bunch of five tool players, in history. Magic Johnson was a 5-tool player, Willie Mays was also one, but I’d like to discuss a particular case I saw this 2011 that called my attention.

Jacoby Ellsbury is one of today’s best all around five-tool player. Going back to what I said about this being a rare breed, he is the first Red Sox player to ever reach a 30-30 season (30 Home Runs, 30 Stolen Bases). In a franchise as big as the Red Sox this is a giant feat, not only that, he is the first Native American of Navajo descent to reach the Major Leagues, quite a fashion huh?. In 2007, as a rookie, he became World Series champion, in 2008, and became the first ever rookie to hit 2 doubles in one inning in a world series game. He batted .438 during the World Series. In 2009 he lead the majors in steals (70), won a defensive player of the year award, and stole the home plate against the Yankees in a tied game. (That ought to be rare huh?)

But this year, he just crushed the league, while making it look so easy and natural. He became only the seventh player to ever hit at least 200 hits, 100 runs, 100 RBI, 30 Home Runs and 30 steals in one single season, and he’s a strong candidate to win the MVP award. Now that’s remarkable.

Overall, all around players are highly successful, but they don’t wake up one day and realize they are what they are. They are constantly challenging themselves and others, to become better. They stay restless, focused and motivated. The good news, each and every one of us can become a five-tool player. It takes dedication, perseverance and hard work, but it pays off. Jacoby is only young, and he still has a long road to go in order to be forever remembered, so do we, as individuals, have a long road to walk to be remembered, as it is a lifetime of accomplishments what it takes. Let’s transcend, let’s be remembered. You and me.


All my best,


Twitter: @asanvicente



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