That's a good idea! Applaud you for your creativity and assertiveness, wish I had thought of it. Son decided not to do the max effort throw on Day 1 @ HF this time. Said he felt it a little on Day 2. He is a 2 way player so he'll hit and take ground balls Day 1, just not the radar gun throw. Also doing the Brown camp Aug 12. 

2019&21 Dad posted:

That's a good idea! Applaud you for your creativity and assertiveness, wish I had thought of it. Son decided not to do the max effort throw on Day 1 @ HF this time. Said he felt it a little on Day 2. He is a 2 way player so he'll hit and take ground balls Day 1, just not the radar gun throw. Also doing the Brown camp Aug 12. 

The way HF works, as described to me by a coach, is the D1 radar stats are shared to all coaches the night after D1.  If the numbers are good, coaches will then go watch that player on D2.  If you skip the radar, you may be missing an opportunity to be seen.  Food for thought....

Thanks for the insight. Son isn't lighting up the gun, so not sure that would attract more eyes on D2. He's contacted certain schools of interest already and will continue to talk with them to let them know where to see him. Plus, having done HF already will give him a little more comfortability with the schedule and knowing what to expect which hopefully will help his performance. 

Fwiw, at HF my son was able to talk with very few coaches on Day 2.  On Day 1, even during games, coaches were moving between fields and were fairly easy to find and approach.  On D2, most seemed to have a plan in mind and to go from game to game to see specific players--they were seldom anywhere other than behind the plate on one of the fields.  It looked to me as if they used D1 to decide who to follow on D2, and that their D2 agendas were fairly set.

CTbballDad posted:
2019&21 Dad posted:

That's a good idea! Applaud you for your creativity and assertiveness, wish I had thought of it. Son decided not to do the max effort throw on Day 1 @ HF this time. Said he felt it a little on Day 2. He is a 2 way player so he'll hit and take ground balls Day 1, just not the radar gun throw. Also doing the Brown camp Aug 12. 

The way HF works, as described to me by a coach, is the D1 radar stats are shared to all coaches the night after D1.  If the numbers are good, coaches will then go watch that player on D2.  If you skip the radar, you may be missing an opportunity to be seen.  Food for thought....

The max effort throw is for position players, right?

In my son's experience, the radar readings -- and a scouting report written by the assigned coach -- was shared with all the coaches after Day 1, but the radar readings were from the 1 inning thrown on Day 1. Of course, the scouting report/radar is not shared with the players (or parents!) but sometimes a coach in the dugout will tell a kid what it said -- at least that is what happened in my son's case.

2019Dad posted:

The max effort throw is for position players, right?

In my son's experience, the radar readings -- and a scouting report written by the assigned coach -- was shared with all the coaches after Day 1, but the radar readings were from the 1 inning thrown on Day 1. Of course, the scouting report/radar is not shared with the players (or parents!) but sometimes a coach in the dugout will tell a kid what it said -- at least that is what happened in my son's case.

I think all of that is correct.  Pitchers who also want to play in the field at HF were specifically told they could choose to skip the max velo throw (or any of the Day 1 skills part).

Not getting velo numbers or any other feedback is a little frustrating.  One tip I can offer:  My son said the catcher he threw to on Day 1 passed on some velo numbers he overheard the coaches discussing while son was pitching.  (In NY, coaches were behind a net screen on the field directly behind the C.)  If I were a P, I'd ask my catcher to keep his ears open and let me know what he hears.

I also was surprised that pitching evaluators were using pocket radars and were only measuring velo on a few pitches.  For almost $1,000 per player, I expected to see real radar guns on tripods with pitch data fed into a laptop.  I'm not complaining--just surprised.

Something I found interesting:  the coaches writing the pitching evals frequently told the catcher what pitch to call, so they could see different looks for each P.  The thing is, the batter could clearly hear the calls, too.  Which maybe shows (again) that college coaches really aren't looking at whether a pitcher gives up hits or a batter goes 4-for-4; instead I suppose they are more concerned about form / mechanics / projectability.  I think players often forget this (so do dads). 

Chico Escuela posted:
2019Dad posted:

The max effort throw is for position players, right?

In my son's experience, the radar readings -- and a scouting report written by the assigned coach -- was shared with all the coaches after Day 1, but the radar readings were from the 1 inning thrown on Day 1. Of course, the scouting report/radar is not shared with the players (or parents!) but sometimes a coach in the dugout will tell a kid what it said -- at least that is what happened in my son's case.

I think all of that is correct.  Pitchers who also want to play in the field at HF were specifically told they could choose to skip the max velo throw (or any of the Day 1 skills part).

Not getting velo numbers or any other feedback is a little frustrating.  One tip I can offer:  My son said the catcher he threw to on Day 1 passed on some velo numbers he overheard the coaches discussing while son was pitching.  (In NY, coaches were behind a net screen on the field directly behind the C.)  If I were a P, I'd ask my catcher to keep his ears open and let me know what he hears.

I also was surprised that pitching evaluators were using pocket radars and were only measuring velo on a few pitches.  For almost $1,000 per player, I expected to see real radar guns on tripods with pitch data fed into a laptop.  I'm not complaining--just surprised.

Something I found interesting:  the coaches writing the pitching evals frequently told the catcher what pitch to call, so they could see different looks for each P.  The thing is, the batter could clearly hear the calls, too.  Which maybe shows (again) that college coaches really aren't looking at whether a pitcher gives up hits or a batter goes 4-for-4; instead I suppose they are more concerned about form / mechanics / projectability.  I think players often forget this (so do dads). 

Chico, funny story on that -- my son got lucky and knew his HF catcher well (they had played scout ball together last fall and go to rival high schools). At one point the catcher called a changeup and my son shook him off. The catcher puts down changeup again, my son shakes him off again, and the catcher, by way of explanation, points to one of the coaches behind the screen! lol, OK, changeup it is!

2019Dad posted:

Chico, funny story on that -- my son got lucky and knew his HF catcher well (they had played scout ball together last fall and go to rival high schools). At one point the catcher called a changeup and my son shook him off. The catcher puts down changeup again, my son shakes him off again, and the catcher, by way of explanation, points to one of the coaches behind the screen! lol, OK, changeup it is!

Good story

At HF my son threw a curveball that ended up being a HR.  I'd *like* to think the batter knew it was coming (but I'm not sure).  

 

Something I found interesting:  the coaches writing the pitching evals frequently told the catcher what pitch to call, so they could see different looks for each P.  The thing is, the batter could clearly hear the calls, too.  Which maybe shows (again) that college coaches really aren't looking at whether a pitcher gives up hits or a batter goes 4-for-4; instead I suppose they are more concerned about form / mechanics / projectability.  I think players often forget this (so do dads). 

Interesting--didn't see this in son's recruiting journey, and he did many showcases. Many showcases do favor the P with 1-1 start count. Batter really only got advantage when P reached 4 balls on batter, which required pitcher to throw fastballs only. "Skills set" of a showcase generally was where the position guys were noticed more. Sure it helps the batter who hits balls hard and square. Always found it interested to watch guys launch balls in BP, yet K every AB in game. 

In one particular showcase though , the games mattered to son, as one coach wanted to see him bunt for a hit, and the other wanted to time him stealing a base. Some showcases requested  runners on base, and son was always a willing participant for that role. 

Gov posted:

If focused on D3 only, HF and Showball are both great camps the summer before Senior year.  Find a way for the targeted D3 to see you more than once. Find out which specific camps and showcases the targeted D3 will attend. My 2018 was focused on Ivy's, but had a few targeted D3's as backups.  The D3 he committed to saw him 4 times (PG WWBA, Chicagoland Showcase, two Showball events).  This D3 HC knew my son was seeking Ivy, so he was patient, it was good my son made an effort to get to know the targeted D3 HC's.  This paid off when it came to August when the Ivy's weren't quite panning out. (my son is a MIF)

If a position player is focused on D1 high academic schools: the summer and fall of incoming Junior year are critical to be seen.  A position player needs more time to get reps and display game actions.  If you are focused on a couple of Ivy's, attending their two day camps the summer or fall of Junior year could be helpful. After the individual camp the coaches will have a very good idea of your abilities, and know who you are. Then, if you attend the Junior year Nov HF or Showball Camps a few months later they'll likely seek you out (assuming your abilities are a possible fit).  After Nov Junior year you'll know if you're being recruited by an Ivy. 

Attending a HF or Showball your incoming summer as a Junior will also compliment, just know that it may be difficult to display your game actions. (How many innings can go by without a ball hit at SS or 2B)  If you have a BIG bat you'll get noticed, period.  If your club team is not playing tournaments that will draw your targeted schools, do not be uncomfortable about missing a club tourney - go to a HF or Showball.

As a parent it could be helpful if you have an objective assessment of your sons playing ability and measurables.  Does his playing ability, measurables, and physical size project to mid D1?   Are his academics in line with the expections of admissions for his targeted high academic college?  If your son wants to play OF for an Ivy, is he running sub 6.9, does he have a strong bat. Could be a wake up call that he's not ready for a particular camp or showcase.  It's better to deploy funds toward improving speed and strength, refine skills, strengthen the bat.  Delay attending an incoming Junior HF or Showball until Nov of his Junior year.  That 6 months could be valuable in adding speed, strength, and improving the bat. Attending a HF event is $995 plus airfare and lodging - could be $2500 spent.

If you're a PO seeking D1 high academic - Such a tricky thing to keep a healthy arm. Attending a July HF or Showball in July, or waiting for October's AZ Classic, and/or a Nov HF or Showball...  Could be better to rest then re-ramp back up in the Fall for Oct and Nov events.  It's also a chance to refine mechanics and regain some strength from a long hot summer.  Plenty of members here with kids pitching for Ivy's, they can tell you about velocities that are recruited.     

Duke Camp: my son also went the Fall of his Soph year.  He had a good MIF glove, average bat, solid gamer on the field, 5'6 140lbs wet.  It was inexpensive, fun, he got a feel for where he stood.   While his glove was complemented, his arm strength, speed and bat were not at the level to stand out among over 150+ kids.  Even if you go Junior year, HC Pollard is trying to be a top power 5 baseball team, he's looking for serious stand out talent.  Duke will invite players they've identified from previous months tournaments (PG WWBA or Music City Classic).  We saw 3-4 players pulled to the side, parents included.  I would have preferred to spend the $1500 toward an instructor who could truly strengthen sons bat.  This could be a good camp if you really want Duke, but do you have the stuff that Duke wants at the time you attend their camp?

If we were to do this all over again:

Summer Incoming Junior year: 

  • Attend either July HF or Showball Camp 
  • One or two Ivy Camps (August)
  • Keep up with summer club tournaments to continue facing advanced pitching
  • Hopefully the club team is playing a tournament where some of the Ivy's will attend (all Ivy's were at the PG WWBA, as well as a few of the high academic D3's).

Fall Junior year:

  • Attend one or two other Ivy camps (Sept - Oct)
  • AZ Fall Showcase (Oct)
  • November HF or Showball

Incoming Senior summer:

  • June HF and July HF or Showball (may miss a club tournament)

Note: Summer before Senior year: few Ivy's and GTown's were still seeking BIG bat corner position players (saw this at July HC Showball event, Georgetown and Columbia) 

Where did your son commit to/where is he playing? What is the Chicagoland Showcase you mention? 

mom2baseballplayer posted:
Gov posted:

If focused on D3 only, HF and Showball are both great camps the summer before Senior year.  Find a way for the targeted D3 to see you more than once. Find out which specific camps and showcases the targeted D3 will attend. My 2018 was focused on Ivy's, but had a few targeted D3's as backups.  The D3 he committed to saw him 4 times (PG WWBA, Chicagoland Showcase, two Showball events).  This D3 HC knew my son was seeking Ivy, so he was patient, it was good my son made an effort to get to know the targeted D3 HC's.  This paid off when it came to August when the Ivy's weren't quite panning out. (my son is a MIF)

If a position player is focused on D1 high academic schools: the summer and fall of incoming Junior year are critical to be seen.  A position player needs more time to get reps and display game actions.  If you are focused on a couple of Ivy's, attending their two day camps the summer or fall of Junior year could be helpful. After the individual camp the coaches will have a very good idea of your abilities, and know who you are. Then, if you attend the Junior year Nov HF or Showball Camps a few months later they'll likely seek you out (assuming your abilities are a possible fit).  After Nov Junior year you'll know if you're being recruited by an Ivy. 

Attending a HF or Showball your incoming summer as a Junior will also compliment, just know that it may be difficult to display your game actions. (How many innings can go by without a ball hit at SS or 2B)  If you have a BIG bat you'll get noticed, period.  If your club team is not playing tournaments that will draw your targeted schools, do not be uncomfortable about missing a club tourney - go to a HF or Showball.

As a parent it could be helpful if you have an objective assessment of your sons playing ability and measurables.  Does his playing ability, measurables, and physical size project to mid D1?   Are his academics in line with the expections of admissions for his targeted high academic college?  If your son wants to play OF for an Ivy, is he running sub 6.9, does he have a strong bat. Could be a wake up call that he's not ready for a particular camp or showcase.  It's better to deploy funds toward improving speed and strength, refine skills, strengthen the bat.  Delay attending an incoming Junior HF or Showball until Nov of his Junior year.  That 6 months could be valuable in adding speed, strength, and improving the bat. Attending a HF event is $995 plus airfare and lodging - could be $2500 spent.

If you're a PO seeking D1 high academic - Such a tricky thing to keep a healthy arm. Attending a July HF or Showball in July, or waiting for October's AZ Classic, and/or a Nov HF or Showball...  Could be better to rest then re-ramp back up in the Fall for Oct and Nov events.  It's also a chance to refine mechanics and regain some strength from a long hot summer.  Plenty of members here with kids pitching for Ivy's, they can tell you about velocities that are recruited.     

Duke Camp: my son also went the Fall of his Soph year.  He had a good MIF glove, average bat, solid gamer on the field, 5'6 140lbs wet.  It was inexpensive, fun, he got a feel for where he stood.   While his glove was complemented, his arm strength, speed and bat were not at the level to stand out among over 150+ kids.  Even if you go Junior year, HC Pollard is trying to be a top power 5 baseball team, he's looking for serious stand out talent.  Duke will invite players they've identified from previous months tournaments (PG WWBA or Music City Classic).  We saw 3-4 players pulled to the side, parents included.  I would have preferred to spend the $1500 toward an instructor who could truly strengthen sons bat.  This could be a good camp if you really want Duke, but do you have the stuff that Duke wants at the time you attend their camp?

If we were to do this all over again:

Summer Incoming Junior year: 

  • Attend either July HF or Showball Camp 
  • One or two Ivy Camps (August)
  • Keep up with summer club tournaments to continue facing advanced pitching
  • Hopefully the club team is playing a tournament where some of the Ivy's will attend (all Ivy's were at the PG WWBA, as well as a few of the high academic D3's).

Fall Junior year:

  • Attend one or two other Ivy camps (Sept - Oct)
  • AZ Fall Showcase (Oct)
  • November HF or Showball

Incoming Senior summer:

  • June HF and July HF or Showball (may miss a club tournament)

Note: Summer before Senior year: few Ivy's and GTown's were still seeking BIG bat corner position players (saw this at July HC Showball event, Georgetown and Columbia) 

Where did your son commit to/where is he playing? What is the Chicagoland Showcase you mention? 

Sending you PM.

The Chicagoland Showcase represents the top 3-4 players on most of the Chicagoland High Schools.  Google it...there are two components: both for top players as well as players with gpa's north of 3.3/3.5.  Lots of HA colleges, similar to HF and Showball.  If your son is one of the better players on the varsity team he should have the option to attend.

2019Dad posted:

My son did HF Session 1 in CA (1 inning on day 1 and 2 innings on day 2 -- perhaps 25 pitches on day 1 and 50 on day 2) and was scheduled to attend Showball in NY. I had the same concern so I called Showball and worked out with them the following schedule -- no bullpen on day 1, and on day 2 they agreed to have him pitch the last two innings of the first game, and the first two innings of the second game. So, essentially, 4 innings in a row.

With any of the camps, you are the paying customer, your son should do as much (or as little) as you feel comfortable with. Another example: my son skipped the medicine ball throw, shuttle runs, and vertical jump testing for pitchers on day 1 at HF. IMO, that testing wasn't likely to improve the likelihood that he would pitch his best in the late afternoon game, so he skipped it.

How did your son like Showball as compared to Headfirst? My son attended HF in  NY as a rising junior-has your son been to HF in NY and CA? Wondering how they compare. Where did your son commit to? Was one showcase more helpful than the other? 

I think I have written this in another thread, but here is my $0.02:  

My 2020 son did HF in NY the summer before his junior year (2018), and SB in Bradenton that fall.  He did Showball in Boston the summer before his senior year (2019). HA recruiting really doesn't start until players have three years of HS grades available, so don't go to one of these events before you are a rising senior and expect to get seriously recruited.  But if you can afford it, I think it's worthwhile to attend one of these camps as a rising junior.  Going "early" gives a player the chance to see what the events are like, to talk with some coaches and maybe lay a foundation for an email and telephone correspondence during junior year.  For this purpose, HF may be the best bet, since it is MUCH easier for players to meet coaches there than at SB.  HF Day 1 includes some time when coaches are available and players are invited to meet and talk with them.  HF was my son's first time dealing with college coaches face-to-face, and the experience of introducing himself and carrying on brief conversations was very valuable.  I think that was great preparation for the phone calls, texts and meetings with coaches during the following spring and summer.

HF is very well organized.  You are given a schedule showing which coaches will be on which fields.  HF also includes several informational talks for players and one for parents--these have some good info, especially if you are new to the process.  

SB does have head coaches.  This has to be a good thing, but I don't know how big that advantage actually is.  Not surprisingly, the camp before my son's senior year was the most productive one he went to, and led to him committing to the school he's attending next year. That camp happened to be SB, but I think he would have gotten similar results from HF.  Both camps are great for being seen by HA schools.  There is a lot of overlap, but it is worth putting the lists of colleges attending side-by-side and determining where you can be seen by the coaches you are most interested in.  Neither camp had every school my son was targeting--for him, SB had a slight advantage this past summer when it came to having most of the colleges he wanted to be seen by.

My son also decided he preferred SB's format, because he said he didn't want to attend the HF informational speeches again.  (He's 18 years old and knows everything...)  SB is almost all business--you go, you play, and you leave.  Unless a coach happens to be assigned to the dugout where your kid is playing, at SB it can be difficult to find them.  (Of course, if a coach knows he wants to meet a player, the coach will make sure they talk.)  But keep in mind: your kid is highly unlikely to get recruited unless he has been in touch with a school via email beforehand and they are expecting to see him.  Shaking hands with a coach at camp is worthwhile--it's good for coaches to put a face with the name they have seen via email; but the meet-and-greets at HF are not a substitute for doing the legwork to get recruited.   

In my experience HF is definitely better run.  At both SB events we attended, scheduling was a little chaotic (long story).  Most importantly, my son was scheduled to pitch at 8 am on Day 2 of SB in 2019.  They decided to start the game early to get a jump on the day, and so they literally put my kid on on the mound at 7:45 a.m. after only letting him throw about five pitches on flat ground to warm up.  He never really got loose--and his velo was a full 5 mph slower than it was an hour later when he pitched his second game with an actual warm up.  The college he will be playing for this fall saw him pitch in game 2.  My son did hear from one or two coaches who saw game 1, but most of the interest he got was from coaches who saw the game he got to warm up for...  

I like SB and I recommend it.  But I do think HF is more organized and provides some worthwhile experiences beyond just the games.  On field, the camps look very, very similar.  You can't go wrong with either one, and IMO the schools attending each camp should be the main factor in your decision.   

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