My 2018 RHP/OF is stuck sitting at 80 mph despite growing to 6'3"/175 since he broke 80 as a 13 year old. Living in the remote northwest without high school baseball, he attended one major showcase and did some guest pitching last fall (for a receptive southern travel team that has asked him back) have produced one serious D3 nibble for his arm and bat, and one WAC D1 "stay in touch" reach out. Past summers at home have always featured hi-level club ball from May-July where the kid played lots, had fun, stood out and developed a passion for the game. With college ball ambitions, and a desire for a mid-80s FB, the plans for next summer include DriveLine's weighted baseball regime, a PG showcase, some local club ball, and some major southwest tournament play with the travel team. Thoughts?
What kind of grades and SAT scores?
Sounds good. Be careful not to overdo it with the arm. If he is like most kids his age, even though he has hit a height spurt, there is still much maturing his body will likely do in the next few years. That, along with keeping mechanics in check, should help considerably with the boost in velo he is hoping for. It just might not happen on the "early D1" timeline that kids would like it to happen. Control what you can control and best of luck.
As always, enjoy every step along the way.
Meanwhile, make sure he stays on top of grades. This is where the real college money will come from. And have him continue to research his career direction, which could ultimately be a huge factor in which schools to target.
LeftySS: unweighted 4.0 GPA.
Thanks Cabbagedad. I'm a newcomer and grateful for the sage advice here.
Train for bigger, faster, stronger. Will be a special summer for your son.
Figure out which schools fall within your target list. If your travels take you near any, visit. Add and subtract as you learn what your S wants/doesn't want.
Prepare for standardized tests.
Find a good PC.
Find a good athletic training program.
Play catch with dad.
Stay on top of grades. (If summer, prepare a list of books.)
Youve got a decent baseball approach sketched out.
Given his GPA and that he is not lighting up the radar gun, he/you may be thinking academics is his calling card to attract interest from non top tier programs. If high academic D3 and D1 schools in non-power conferences is the goal, I'd strongly consider HeadFirst Camp (probably Sacramento best for you) and/or one of the Stanford Camps. Lots and lots on this site (just use search button) and online on both.
I agree with everything that has been offered by others. Your son has time to develop his skills in his frame. You've mentioned he is a RHP/OF sitting at 80. What about batting and his speed....are these tools that he could leverage at the next level or does he prefer to pitch? I ask this question because many people at your son's age are beginning to decide between position player or pitcher.
One of the best things we did when my oldest son was about your son's age was get him a pitching coach that was not associatied with his travel team. This helped tune his mechanics, pitching arsenal, thought process and brought out the best in him. There was a lot of "homework" that he did on his own (long toss, band work, etc....) but having someone to work with on a fairly regular basis was instrumental to his success. Goosegg had offered that up, and I wanted to emphasize that suggestion.
Velocity & skill opens doors. Academics opens doors. Sometimes these are different doors and sometimes they can be the same doors. As you are developing your strategy, look at all the possible options based on your son's goals and focus on a list a schools that fit those goals. There are so many options, and the people at HSBBWeb can help you.
Recruited= passion + skill + exposure + persistence + luck.
Another skill that opens doors is foot speed. A player can't steal first. But a lot of college coaches light up when they see top level foot speed. Given the 60 is often one of the first tests at a showcase foot speed is a great first notice.
You have received a lot of great feedback. And you have some elements of a sound Summer plan already.
Many families with a profile similar to your son's focus too much on playing games the Summer before the player's Junior year. Local leagues, travel tournaments, big showcases, getting seen by colleges, etc. That can be great if the rising Junior is ready for that exposure. But many are not... yet.
I recommend to players at this stage to focus (as others have noted) on: standardized test prep; getting bigger, faster, stronger; and on further developing baseball skills.
As a family, I recommend visiting some colleges to begin getting a sense of what fits: urban, suburban, rural; small, medium, large; in state vs. out of state; 2 year vs, 4 year. And then beginning to compile that first (and it will change over time) target college list based on the intersection of where you son might be able to play AND be admitted.
Baseball tools matter. My 2016 spent time at the TX Baseball Ranch a couple Summers back to work on improving throwing velocity...and he ultimately gained a solid amount of mph. He began serious strength, speed, and agility training and was able to put on weight and get substantially faster. He worked regularly on his batting with a private instructor. These are all things that can be difficult to do during the high school season because of time constraints.
He played in about 8-10 baseball games, but all locally.
Academics, particularly test scores, matter. He worked on ACT prep and eventually scored 6 points higher.
We made him work so that he had his own spending money. He volunteered for a week with his youth group. We went to church as a family. He had free time with his friends. I say these things only because we lived a little bit with our 2012 and realized that a better balance was needed, i.e., not all baseball all the time.
We have son's the same age and I'm thinking we live in the same general part of the country. My son is a LHP/outfielder sitting about 80 right now. He is a few inches shorter than yours and his velocity has shot up over the last 9 months or so (sat high 60s as an incoming Freshman). You've gotten a lot of great advice. After reading this site for a couple years and talking to my son's coaches, we've developed a plan for the summer that sounds similar to yours. I'll PM you with his plans.