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I started to post this on the other post but I want to get some thoughts on a slightly different angle on the question…

I see baseball losing many talented players, not just poor blacks, but middle class America in general. Why you ask? MONEY

No, I don't mean the player's wages; I'm talking about what it costs to play. While many people will tell you that if your kid is good enough, they will find you. You find today that most if not all of the better players in an area are leaving neighborhood programs to chase that elite travel team. It really became noticeable in our area this summer. Thousands upon thousands of dollars are being spent on travel programs. I see many kids, who are better players, staying home and thinking that they can't get discovered. They tend to get less training because they think they aren’t good enough, since they weren’t asked or invited to try-out. Only the kids with the bucks play.

How do you guys, and gals, feel? Do you have to play, and pay, to have a good shot at a future in baseball (not just pros but all levels of college too)?
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I would say you are off base thinking only the rich can travel. My family has been splitting time at the diamonds across the east coast for three years now. We also have not had a true vacation for three years. The way I look at it is if you want it bad enough, you will find a way or means to get it. We look at it as giving our son an avenue to succeed. If he makes it to college or further we have done our job. Even if he ends up doing something else other than baseball we will still feel good knowing we gave him a chance. I will sacrifice everything I have for my kids. Thats just the way I am. I do know several people that have said that they are not willing to give up thier family vacation to go watch baseball. Me, a bad day at the ballfeild beats any line in any amusement park anyday. It is about money but if you want it bad enough for your kids future no matter what the sport or choice is, you will find ways... from an average middle class american.
( Been to 16 states in 3 summers )
yes the traveling teams have boomed.this is good and bad.some travel teams are there to teach the game while others ar in for $$$$.also some kids make teams because mom / dad can afford it.other kids w/o deep pockets cannot play.there is another option in some areas. IMO American Legion baseball is great in our area.league is good and coach does excellent job.just food for thought....
It takes money to fish with your kids--it takes money to play golf or tennis with your kids--it takes money to be ay a MLB game with your kids

It takes money to do anything with anyone today-- so why not spend it watching your son/daughter do what they love and aspire to continue to do

It is called being parent and being with your kid"s"

Lets put it this way-- my wife and I now have an extended family because of our program-- but we show up at games they kids are playing outside of our program-- it takes gas money. dinner money, road toll money etc-- but they are "oru kids: and we go to support them---many times they do not even know we are there watching them

It is not money--it is called caring !!!!
Last edited by TRhit
In order to become the best player you can be, you need to play tough competition.
That it was Travel ball Provide's.

How do Athlete's get noticed for Football, Basketball.
Do they go to Football camps?
Are do they Play on high profile AAU Basketball Team's?
Do they Travel are stay in Motels?
I mean How do they get Noticed.
Is it given to them FREE?
Is it Sponsered by Corporation's?
I'm just wondering, How is it done?
the EH
I'd love to hear from some of the players who have signed or drafted to see what their experiences were/are.

I'm afraid that I can't afford the type of money some of you appear to be able to. We don't take vacations, other than the weekend type. Much of my disposable income “is” spent on baseball.

The last I heard, East Cobb cost $1500, $100+ just to try-out, Home Plate $1800 for the summer program and $1000 for the fall program and I don’t know of any assistance/programs offered to offset the cost. I know one family that spent $6000 last spring, all family travel included. How many people can afford that?

I understand that football guys get noticed from their school games and the camps they attend, as well as any special events they are invited too. Basketball is much like baseball and it is the AAU travel programs.
My son has played on travel teams(AAU) since he was 10 and the cost was never that great. Always under one thousand dollars. Sometimes under five hundred dollars. Now that my son is 17 and a Junior in H.S. we have commited to a travel team that will cost over two thousand dollars. But this is a one year thing. He will get exposure at the big Ameteur tournaments in front of all the Major League teams and a lot of college coaches. It is not necessary to spend a lot of money on travel ball when the kids are younger.

In New Jersey, we would travel to Connecticut or Maryland or New York every year but only once did we go to Florida. But Florida was a big expense and the baseball was the same.

Now, if you want to talk expensive, try gymnastics. Two hundred a month and that was just for starters. Year round workouts and only six or seven meets a year, including states. Three grand a year minimum and that was when my daughter was only 7 years old. Mercifully, she stopped when she was 12 years old.
I'm afraid that I can't afford the type of money some of you appear to be able to. We don't take vacations, other than the weekend type. Much of my disposable income “is” spent on baseball.

You are not alone, and probably in the majority. Unfortunatly we all look at the top of the food chain and compare ourselves to them. In my cynical way I feel that to be at the top of the food chain you must also eat your young, and in a philisophical way many parents of these select teams do at least put their kids on the plate. You do not have to play for East Cobb and by sheer numbers not everyone can. You can take your selective weekend trips by doing your homework on showcases and events that will be best for your son and most enjoyable for your family. At the same time training is the most important part of a young players makeup. You don't always have to buy opportunity, sometimes it's better to earn it. If you have the tools they will come.
Last edited by rz1
Money is always an issue however I have to agree with those that say if there is a will there is a way. I have 2 sons that play baseball at a high level. We are not a family with money. My husband is 85 per cent blind and since he started loosing hs site we have had to really watch the pennies. As our oldest son grew he went to the Little League World Series in 2000. We traveled with him and used our savings. He came home with a National Championship and we all came home with a life time of memories. THe next year we started select ball and managed to stay on top. Once high school started we as parents were sure we would not be able to handle the fees. While our sons friends were all getting private lessons my sons just picked up their work ethic. As my oldest became a Junior he had the opportunity to make a top squad here in Houston. We knew we could not afford it but he tries out and made it. We spoke to the coaches and almost fell over when he told us he would work with us. My son played that season and we paid what we could. My son will start in college next year on scholarship. He was the only position player on his squad to receive a baseball scholarship and he earned the largest scholarship given out of 7 this year. THe day he signed his letter he had both his high school and summer coach there with him. Moral of the story contrary to what alot is said the top teams want good ball players. If you don't have the money up front talk to them. Never sell yourself or that team short.

Here's our experience.

We have five kids. My husband and I both work (self-employed). We take one or two long weekend-style vacations every year. That's it.

When we still had three or four kids living at home, we were not in a position to cover the costs of travel teams or camps for any of our kids sports, even though the youngest three were invited in various sports. That's just the way it was.

I've posted elsewhere that we live about two hours away from Phoenix, so not only was there the cost to play to consider (and the travel and hotels, etc.), but then we were two hours' drive away from where the teams were based.

For the last two years, we only had the last one at home, and he was able to do the following: played on a Junior Olympics team summer after soph year, played on Arizona's Junior Sunbelt team summer after junior year, played in a fall ball team that faced various AZ junior college teams during fall of senior year.

Went to one PG event in SoCal fall of senior year.

He also was playing summer league for his own high school team every summer.

That was it. That was what we felt we could afford. There were a lot of invitations that we just had to decline.

We loved the experience and got so much out of it. There was a little second guessing ("Should we be doing more????") but I think we're all satisfied with the amount of exposure we gave him. His older brothers and sister have cheered him the whole way and never voiced resentment that we didn't do the same for them when they were still in high school.

Now? He was drafted on the second day and is going to a top ranked JUCO next year. The future looks good.

I have to agree that any amount of exposure is better than none, but in our case, our somewhat limited exposure seems to have been enough. If I had a boatload of $$ or maybe one or two kids instead of five, I'm sure we would have spent more on any of the kids who seemed like they were serious about going for it.

Last edited by ktcosmos

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