How do you get on those teams if you don't have the skills? Sure if you can flat out run or throw, someone may give you a chance, but the rest are looking for ball players. You don't get on a quality team playing against quality opponents if all you have is potential. At least not around here. If you wait, it is too late and your spot is taken by someone who has put in the time at the travel level to get as good as they can.
Our HS had 40+ trying out for the freshman team. They kept 14. Potential didn't make the cut. Most of the kids who come out have abilities to one degree or the other. The difference a lot of the time is skill level. Kids with similar potential and talent go against each other for a spot. The kid with the better skills will win. And they are developed on the small diamonds.