I met Clayton Kershaw years ago at The Tournament of Stars in Missouri. I was 17 years old, I think. I just remember us having a really great time playing on that team because we were both clowns. He was a really funny guy, but his stuff was some of the best I'd ever seen. He had that funky delivery back then, so imagine high school hitters having to face that stuff,. Thank the Baseball Gods he was on my team. But back to my point. It was just the contrast that let me know how good the guy was. Great, goofy, awesome guy off the field, but on, he turned into this intensely focused and competitive rock star. Even the nicest guys want to kick your butt when it comes to playing the game at a high level. Almost to the point of a physical fight. I love it.
Recently I have come across a new group of hitters who are terrified to be "cocky." I think you need to wake up hitter! If you think for one second that that pitcher isn't trying to dominate you, then you have a rude awakening coming. You will get Clayton Kershaw'd. I know the idea of being cocky has a negative rep. But so what. As long as your cockiness is accompanied by discipline, then by all means, be confident! They aren't THAT much different. Those two words are hard to tell apart some days, but I know to some degree they both command respect.
Be Respectful! I am not saying walk around like your you know what don't stink. I am saying you need to KNOW that you are going to be successful. Without a shadow of a doubt. Now go out there and be confident and put inthe work.