As I read other responses I think I see that the word "important" seems to have different meanings or connotations. I took it to mean as having value in terms of skill development for later years to help with a kids position for playing on a HS varsity team and onto college teams. If "important" simply means having your boy enjoy a fun experience, then having him in a "high level team" can certainly provide wonderful experiences. How can a kid on such a team traveling around to fun places playing at complexes like those of Field Of Dreams not have a great time? Even parents at those games tend to have a great time when doing this (except a few who take exception to their kids who don't get to play much and the team losing and not going on to extra games for championships ;-) ). So, if it's "important" for your boy to have a good time, certainly having young players like 9U's on a "high level team" can be a very fun and even inspiring experience. Though as I recall, kids of this age tend of have fun experiences any time they can get out and PLAY with others. And I guess, this day and age it's also a way to keep them out of trouble . . .???