The background:

This past off-season my 15U did some training at a facility run by one of the best known travel organizations in this area.  (We went because it aligned with an opening in his schedule and he was interested in seeing how they did things there – just out of curiosity.)  Right away, they expressed an interest in having my son play with them.  However, he was already committed – meaning I already paid for him – to play with another organization this summer (after the High School season).  So, his answer to them – every time they would say to him that he was definitely going to play for them! – was “Maybe in the fall?”  (For the record, no one there ever spoke to me at all.  They would always communicate with him directly.) 

Now that it’s getting closer, I thought it made sense to get some more information on how the new place slotted their teams, where they would play, how much it cost, etc. – so that I could see if this was something that we could consider in the fall.  (If that’s what my kid wanted to do.)

A week ago, I reached out to the head of the organization to say I was hoping to get some information on how they did things, etc.  He said he was really excited to hear that my son would consider playing for them.  And, he asked me for my cell number so that we could connect.  So, I sent him the number and said that I would like to talk soon because my son’s current team is already looking at the fall (and I wanted to be able to consider all options before getting pressed into something).  That was a week ago and I never heard anything else.

I mentioned this to my son and he said that he (meaning the guy) would probably never get back to me because he deals directly with the players and not parents. 

I am fine with this arrangement when it comes to team related matters.  But, since I am the one writing the checks and the one who has to arrange for travel and lodging for the tournaments (for my 15 years old), I want to know those plans, requirements, expectations and I expect that information would be discussed with the adult parent as opposed to the kid player.  And, all the other stuff can just be between the coaches and players, etc.

The question: 

Am I being unrealistic in trying to have a conversation on how the organization works, their plans and the costs?  Further, how long do I wait?  And, should I chase after him or just leave it with him since the ball (meaning my phone number) is in his court?

Original Post

No, you're being realistic. It should be the parents job to find and put their kids on suitable teams. I understand the kids talking to HS and college coaches exclusively, but considering you are responsible for his transportation, payment and everything in between this is something the parent should sort out. Most 15 year olds are not all that familiar with which tournaments you need to hit, how hard you have to throw to get recruited by what levels, seeking college advice, etc. They're to going to know to ask roster questions, travel plans, A vs B team and everything in between. 

If the guy won't take your calls or get back to you then move on. It sounds to me like he either really wants nothing to do with the parents or he is trying to lure a bunch of 15 year olds into contracts without asking questions and getting their parents to blindly write checks. Maybe it is a method that works for him but I'm sure there are plenty of parents who would be uncomfortable with that arrangement as well. There are some things the kids need to handle or some things the parents take care of. This would be one of them. 

I agree. Travel Ball is not really competetive sport, it is pay to play to show your skills and thus the one who writes the check should ask the questions. Maybe the coach wants to make his program feel like a competetive hs or college program but it really isn't, it is still pay to play.

Hs or college ball of course is different, the coach doesn't have to explain anything, the only thing he has to to is winning without violating the rules.if he makes a bad decision and wins he is fine, if he makes a bad decision and loses he might lose his job, it is the bottom line he is judged for.

When I stopped coaching my son programs interested in him invited both of us to visit their facility and me to talk arrangements. For the couple I told my son was familiar with the facilities they asked me to come by to discuss arrangements.

As mentioned kids don’t understand the big picture. They only hear the good stuff. It’s because they're susceptible to hype and don’t know what questions to ask. When college recruiting started for my daughter at fifteen I remember her explaining to me a certain college was only ten thousand more (per year).

You also have to remember that the teams are starting there summer seasons and the guys running the organizations are busy.  Maybe he just got busy and hasn't had a chance to get back to you.  Do you have his number?  If you don't hear from him in a week or so, give him a call.

During the high school years travel recruiting can be like college. Programs have A lists and B lists. Like college ball you want to go where you’re loved over where they’re interested. It’s possible your son is the if/then solution. 

If so, it’s not a slight to your son. It’s just a matter of preference. He’s entering the world where everyone can play. 

Francis - You are being more than reasonable.  The better run travel organizations are very clear with their communication and expectations.   Given that it is the busy time for travel ball, send him (and the organizational head) a text or email so they can respond when it is convenient for them.    If there is no response after that, it is time to move on.   Good luck! 

You're being pretty realistic.  I only had one issue with this and it was with a high school coach that didn't want to deal with parents (which I mostly agree with).  There were some medical questions with my son and what a doctor said he could or could not do.  After a relative intense conversation, we came to the agreement that neither of us really wanted me to be involved in the baseball discussions, but if the coach had any medical concerns or financial concerns that he would involve me in the discussions immediately  

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