Hello all-

I wanted to ask for some advice on my recruiting journey. I am a 2021 RHP, and I am starting to navigate the recruiting process. However, there is one school I am very interested in, and fits all my needs and wants in a school. It is a D1 program, a terrific academic institution, mid-size, located in a beautiful area, and a great school in general. I believe I have the talent to play at this school, as it is a mid-level D1 school (fastball tops out at 84 as a sophomore, compared with current roster players, I am either on track or above the track with them velocity wise). The only problem? It is located 2,500 miles from my area. Although I don't mind going to a college this far, in fact, I prefer it, I have no idea how I can possibly get onto this programs radar. I have reached out with emails introducing myself and video, along with filling out the questionnaire (I have received a couple emails about on-campus prospect camps). I know I am early (2021), but from those who are experienced with recruiting, how do people sign with programs that far? Is it possible? Thanks.

Original Post

Send an email to the head coach and the assistant in charge of recruiting. Express interest in the college and the baseball program. Ask them where you can get in front of them. Provide academic and baseball metrics that can help. A quality mechanics video could help. Do not mistake highlights for mechanics.

They may travel closer to you than you think. Or there may be a former player or alumnus who can take. A look at you and pass on a good word to the coach you’re worth checking out. 

Here’s the however ... There are a lot more D1 prospects out west than there are places to play. It’s why so many head eastward. If you were a coach choosing between two similar players would you take the kid 2,500 miles from home or the local kid? 

Last edited by RJM

Swagg, I am in California and quite familiar with the D1's in the state and the typical recruits they go after.  You may very well either be or eventually be a talented enough player but it is not as simple as having a FB that measures up to others on their roster.   There are thousands of REALLY good baseball players in California... way too many for the 25 D1 schools in the state, let alone for those few schools that match your description... "a terrific academic institution, mid-size, located in a beautiful area".   Keep in mind that it is far easier and more cost-effective for that school to recruit in-state players.  I'm sure if you check the roster, that will be reflected.  

Do you have the grades?  Can your family afford not only out-of-state tuition but all the additional travel expenses that will be incurred (going home for Holidays, family coming to see you play on occasion, etc.)?   How will you get in front of the coaches?  Beyond velo, do you have a skill set that stands out from the thousands of other players that want that same spot?  Does the school have the academic major you are interested in?  Have you considered that the cost of living in that special location may be considerably higher, even for students?  The list goes on.  The hurdles are many.  

Now, how do you overcome those hurdles.  Well, for the baseball part, assuming you have the skill set, it would certainly help if you have a qualified advocate in your corner.   This may be a well respected travel coach of an organization that participates in the bigger events or a trainer/instructor that has high level qualifications.  Their word of recommendation along with quality video that RJM suggested may get someone's attention.  Do you have such a person in your camp?  Also, most of the D1 schools in CA will have RC's attending some of the bigger showcase tourneys back your way.  Are you playing with a travel team that plays in those events?  What is it about the specific school that is appealing to you besides the general things you mention?  

 

Last edited by cabbagedad

Thanks for the response. I know, the odds are stacked up against me. This is why I am thankful for forums like this, and users like yourself to help guide me and other players. The roster naturally is a majority of California natives, or surrounding states (Colorado, Arizona, Nevada). There are, however, some longer distance players, such as Illinois and Florida, which gave me a bit of hope. Grade wise, I am at the level I need to be at, with a 4.2 GPA (along with rigorous studies and AP courses), and money wise, it will take care of itself (I'm just trying to get on their radar right now). As a pitcher, I definitely know you need A LOT  more than just a hot fastball to play next level. I have good control, a great breaking ball, along with a good changeup. I really understand the circumstances and the things I need to understand. What is appealing, other than the general areas I mentioned, you ask? Along with the needs, it satisfies, along with wants in a school, It is the closest thing to a perfect school for me. It feels right, and I see myself successfully earning a degree there. But things change, and who knows, it may not be the fit for me. However, right now I need to know what the best way is to get this programs attention. 

Have you visited the school? We have a small high school and two 2018 graduates who went D1 in various sports (not baseball) at schools a distance from home. They've already transferred closer to home. Make sure you really really really understand what that distance means and don't put all your eggs in one basket.

My son was excited about a program a 3-hour plane ride from home, until on the way home from his visit, the plane developed a mechanical issue and he got home roughly 12 hours later than planned.

There's a lot more than baseball you need to evaluate in this decision.

I would suggest you attend a prospect camp.  They will find a way to talk to you if you are a recruit that fits the bill. Make sure you email several times before, letting them know you’ll attend.

California is a great place to play, attend college, and live. 

Where do you start? First, you've got the grades and assuming your scores (will) match you've cleared the academic hurdle (true for every other D1 in the country also, btw). If you haven't sat for the ACT/SAT, prepare hard to get a score which matches your grades.

For recruiting, Cali D1s may view video, but the D1s won't recruit off of it - each needs eyes on you. So, you need to find out which events the coaches recruit from. The Stanford Camp is well attended - and for you, the out-of-state HA colleges attending are a bonus.

It seems as if your under minimal financial pressure and a soph, so attending that school's prospect camp may be a good idea this summer. While no one recruits off of "demonstrated interest," it is a statement to the HC that you in fact traveled cross-country to speak to him. Also, it will give you an idea whether the image about the school and Cali matches what you'll experience.  (Personally, I'd try to attend Stanford camp AND this college camp AND think about attending the Headfirst Cali camp also. This would require a lot of planning and perhaps a family vacation could be built around it.)

Both my kids attended East Coast colleges and neither was homesick, minded the weather, or the distance. (In fact, S - because of summer college ball - didn't return home for over a full year.) Both matured outside Mom and Dads withering attention - and it was well worth it to us that they do that far away!

No one knows if your velo will plateau or increase. So, unless I know the college I can't tell you the velo needed, but assume Stanford looks at sitting 90, University of San Diego looks at sitting 88, UCSD (moving to D1) looks at 87. AND, Cali is full of guys throwing those speeds.

Unlike, e.g., an Ivy, Cali schools don't generally recruit nationally because they dont need to; but, if the right recruit presents himself in front of their eyes, they don't care where you're from - if you have the goods. 

Good luck and cast a wider net; your grades (and hopefully scores) give you lots of options - couple with a 90+ FB and you'll have potential options about which you may have not yet contemplated.

 

We didn’t send to many Cali schools, but we did send to Stanford. There is a Youtube video from the pitching g coach saying that more kids should send video and that he does watch them.  We are halfway across the country but did send video. They watched for 10 minutes and called and invited him for a visit.    I would say it’s always worth the 3-4 minutes it takes to send off videos and emails.  You never know.

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