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When son headed off to college, we were looking at the available numbers (based upon numbers not used and graduations). He is definitely a single digit guy. His number was given to him-- #1 which was actually his HS number (#6 was worn by a catcher, that was son's  American Legion # for years). A fellow freshman OF in his class was given uniform #2. It was quite fitting as RipkenFanSon and the OF (#1 & #2) also pretty much batted #1 and #2 (or #2 and #1) in batting order for four years!

Son managed to snag his HS# 2 or upside down 2 with each of his three colleges but it was very much a size thing.  Each time, the conversation was interesting (if there even was one) for about a minute before talking about much more important things like "how's the battle for playing time going?" or "will the team compete this year?"

Somehow, when I saw the topic, I knew immediately who the OP was... love ya buddy

@cabbagedad posted:

Son managed to snag his HS# 2 or upside down 2 with each of his three colleges but it was very much a size thing.  Each time, the conversation was interesting (if there even was one) for about a minute before talking about much more important things like "how's the battle for playing time going?" or "will the team compete this year?"

Somehow, when I saw the topic, I knew immediately who the OP was... love ya buddy

First 1:05

https://youtu.be/ozZpfLxinzw

Just a joke Francis.

Well, I've always wondered, it seems like low number guys are the starters.  Most higher number guys are not starting (except for a few cases).   Is this real, or am I imagining it?

There's definitely something to that.  The better players and the guys that have been in the program for a while and contribute tend to get first choice (along with seniority guys - but a lot of guys that don't play don't stick around in the program so, sort of the same thing).  A player's first choice is typically what they had before or same as someone they follow.

Remember, most HS programs will only carry a roster of between 15-25 guys and will quite often order uniforms numbered 1 thru however many uni's they buy (18-30ish) and go the simple logical route of lowest numbers are smallest sizes, next lowest are mediums, etc.  Some HS's will also add in some famous player numbers but those are rarely high numbers (say, 45 and up).

So, when players get to college, they often pick a # they had in HS when given the choice.  If not, they pick another they are familiar with - also usually a relatively lower #.

There are plenty of exceptions to this but I think it generally has merit.

My son spent 4 years in HS as #6 in baseball and #12 in basketball.  When he got to college he was given #35.  I joked that that was a spring training number. He could have claimed 6 or 12 as a sophomore but he had a pretty good freshman year and so he decided to stay with 35.

The most .... interesting... number either of my kids had was my youngest in 8th grade (I think) CYO basketball.  Somehow he ended up with #17.  As you can imagine the refs gave him nonstop grief.

There is no sport more superstitious and number focused than baseball...without question.   There is no logic to it.

The thing I find most interesting is that my kids did not give a rip what their numbers were in travel baseball, high school, Legion or college.   Two of them are math geeks "who think, talk and write in numbers and formulas", and they probably cared the least what their baseball number was as long as the jersey fit.   Go figure.

       

Son was assigned No. 44 during his freshman year. Later, the number he had worn in high school became available — it's his birthday (which he shared with his hitting coach and mentor now deceased) and was the number of one of his heroes. I asked why he didn't go get it and he said because he'd heard the last guy who had that number had left the program on bad terms. The guy who had 44 had been drafted. He decided to stick with 44. I still struggle to remember his number.

My son had the same number in soccer and travel baseball (LL only had 1-15 in regular season) from the time he started playing. He got the same number in high school. Senior year his uniform was missing. He had to change his number. He went with the new number in college.

My daughter had the same number in travel softball starting in 12u, high school and college except freshman year. She also had the number in high school volleyball. Freshman year she was asked if she had a nickname. She said, “Yes, but it’s kind irrelevant if I don’t have #16.” She got it soph year.

Neither kid had numbers that were legal in high school basketball.

I'm with you IowaMom23.  My son always wore 16 except one year he had to wear 24.  When he got to college, 16 was taken the year before so he was given 35.  I still have to think about what number my son is because he has always worn 16.  I don't think by the time the number becomes available that he will change numbers now.   I don't see the number thing that big of a deal in college.  Ours seems to be that the larger numbers are larger uniforms.  All of our very big guys who are pitchers or position guys are the 40's and up.  Son has lost 20 pounds since he got there and may have to change numbers if he doesn't put muscle weight back on in the next year.   Uniform is getting baggy on him.

24 was mine's number from rec all the way through HS. In college, Freshman year he was assigned 47. Sophomore year he got to pick and chose 4, was expected to play a position. This year he could have kept 4, but he and an infielder switched numbers, he's 35 this year. He's only pitched this year, and I suspect will keep 35 for the remainder of his career. Although there are exceptions, at his school position players are lower numbers, pitchers are higher. 

I think my son got to choose his college number, got the one he had worn in HS and travel.

Freshman year of HS he did not get that number, since freshmen chose last.  He had something like 23, but one of the uniforms didn't have a 23, so he wore 35 in that uniform.  When he played in his first varsity game, he was wearing #35, we didn't even realize he was in the game until the 2nd inning.

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