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 13U General Discussion
 A question for the masses.
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oldtimer21

2 Posts

Posted - 03/12/2019 :  09:23:20  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Am I the only one who feels like we are getting a raw deal from all the tournament sponsors? And it's not just PG, USSSA, TC or TBS, it's all of them, and it's in every sport. The fees to play in these tournaments are ridiculous. Take PG for example, to play this last weekend, the fee was $650 with a $150 gate fee. I understand these people are in the business to make a profit, and I appreciate all the hard work they put in to make sure that all the games were played with the conditions working against everyone, but $800???? If my math is correct, and each team was charged the same amount, which is another topic completely, then gross just off 13U was $28000. That includes 60/90, major and minor. Do I blame the TD's? Heck no. It's capitalism. BUT, as the consumer, do we have other options? Can we create other options that are more economically friendly, while still being competitive, and have an affect on the cost of entering a tournament? Why not start a metro area travel league? Play 2 games a week? There's enough programs that have their own fields that the overhead would be minimal. Kids would get plenty of baseball in and the parents wouldn't be spending THOUSANDS of dollars in dues and also losing family time on the weekends. I love baseball and love seeing the kids compete, but it just seems like we've lost perspective. I'd love to hear how others feel. Including the TD's. Help us understand.

Edited by - oldtimer21 on 03/12/2019 10:35:30

takeit4aride

5 Posts

Posted - 03/12/2019 :  12:43:32  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
You are right on point!
quote:
Originally posted by oldtimer21

Am I the only one who feels like we are getting a raw deal from all the tournament sponsors? And it's not just PG, USSSA, TC or TBS, it's all of them, and it's in every sport. The fees to play in these tournaments are ridiculous. Take PG for example, to play this last weekend, the fee was $650 with a $150 gate fee. I understand these people are in the business to make a profit, and I appreciate all the hard work they put in to make sure that all the games were played with the conditions working against everyone, but $800???? If my math is correct, and each team was charged the same amount, which is another topic completely, then gross just off 13U was $28000. That includes 60/90, major and minor. Do I blame the TD's? Heck no. It's capitalism. BUT, as the consumer, do we have other options? Can we create other options that are more economically friendly, while still being competitive, and have an affect on the cost of entering a tournament? Why not start a metro area travel league? Play 2 games a week? There's enough programs that have their own fields that the overhead would be minimal. Kids would get plenty of baseball in and the parents wouldn't be spending THOUSANDS of dollars in dues and also losing family time on the weekends. I love baseball and love seeing the kids compete, but it just seems like we've lost perspective. I'd love to hear how others feel. Including the TD's. Help us understand.

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Gatravelbaseball

27 Posts

Posted - 03/12/2019 :  15:09:47  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
You are definitely NOT the only one who feels like you are getting a raw deal.

There are attempts here and there to do what you suggest, but very few ever get any kind of traction. It's hard to actually pull it off, for one. Plus the motivation for most to do so isn't there, because (so far) parents have been willing to cut bigger and bigger checks each year to make these higher prices possible.

I would like to point out a couple of tournaments that still have reasonable prices (entry fees under $400 and reasonable gate fees): Grand Slam Sports and Southern Sports. They aren't big-name tourneys that draw the big-name teams, but I've heard they run solid tourneys and are probably a really good option for the majority of teams out there.

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Boomstick

25 Posts

Posted - 03/13/2019 :  11:46:55  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Yep, you are correct. Itís preposterous that we pay what we do to play in these tourneys...but we continue to. Iíd love for better options because at this age, nobody is evaluating our kids for college/pro anyway. He just needs reps against good players until he gets older.

When PG was at lakepoint, ok, itís nice as you take the field 5 minutes after the rain clears instead of having yonplay mudball like we did this weekend, so maybe a premium makes sense, but EC is no Lakepoint, nor are most of the parks they play their tourneys in. And PG is unlikely to cancel tourneys due to weather unless the field is under a foot of water because itís all about the benjamins for them.

If the less expensive alternatives start drawing the better teams, it could help bring change, but it will take organization by someone with resources/connections and everybody saying ďENOUGH ALREADY!Ē before that will ever happen.
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morrsco

42 Posts

Posted - 03/13/2019 :  14:46:58  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Something like you are talking about requires a big effort to pull off. Players, coaches, and parent want to focus on just baseball and not all of the supporting tasks that running a tourney or league requires.

I helped coach a team in 12U that tried to run a travel league over the fall season. Our biggest issue was taking care of the fields and the lack of help. 4 teams would try to play 2 games each on a Sunday. We generally hosted at our field which did help us generate money from the concession stand. Naturally the coaches for the other teams playing weren't interested in showing up extra early to help us prepare our fields. The county doesn't really keep the fields in game ready condition. Some of the players parents from our team helped out a great deal in the concession stand, but we had a harder time finding dads or moms to help prepare the field. Any rain would lead to long delays while we tried to fix the field. Maybe if our team had 5 or 6 coaches working, we could have run a smoother league.
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RUSemiPro

77 Posts

Posted - 03/13/2019 :  22:08:53  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Yep, all about the benjamins....

PG and DiamondCast $40 for a yearly subscription. At first I was like cool, I don't have to do GameChanger and have parents get up set etc... But the Kids they have doing DiamondCast are inconsistent to say the least, and those stats are used by PG. I couldn't begin to tell you this weekend how many ROE were scored as hits. Sometimes Velo recorded, sometimes not.

Worst of all is ECB scoreboards don't work and we are paying 625/650 plus another 150 for gate and you don't have working scoreboards??

It's borderline insane.

quote:
Originally posted by Boomstick

Yep, you are correct. Itís preposterous that we pay what we do to play in these tourneys...but we continue to. Iíd love for better options because at this age, nobody is evaluating our kids for college/pro anyway. He just needs reps against good players until he gets older.

When PG was at lakepoint, ok, itís nice as you take the field 5 minutes after the rain clears instead of having yonplay mudball like we did this weekend, so maybe a premium makes sense, but EC is no Lakepoint, nor are most of the parks they play their tourneys in. And PG is unlikely to cancel tourneys due to weather unless the field is under a foot of water because itís all about the benjamins for them.

If the less expensive alternatives start drawing the better teams, it could help bring change, but it will take organization by someone with resources/connections and everybody saying ďENOUGH ALREADY!Ē before that will ever happen.

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CaCO3Girl

1966 Posts

Posted - 03/14/2019 :  09:44:41  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
It only gets worse as you get older! The 16u WWBA is a $2000 entry fee per team.

It appears to me that you pay for the draw of the best of the best teams. You want to play the national teams you pay.

You want to play the local teams? Fine you can put together a small league, practice a couple times a week and play 1-2 games on the weekend; I believe it is referred to as rec ball. And really that is what this comes down to. What you are describing is rec park ball, and there is NOTHING wrong with rec park ball.

We have 4000 travel teams because people wanted to group together talented kids...name 20 talented travel ball teams in your age group...there likely aren't. So why do we have soooo many travel teams?

The truth is, Travel Ball use to mean something special. It really use to be the 12 year olds throwing 80 mph. Now anyone can have parents pay $2000 and say "Yup, I have a travel ball team"...I've said it before and I'll say it again, not EVERY kid is special, and not everyone is qualified to coach.

If you don't like how much the tourneys cost bring the rec parks back to life. Having 20+ teams at rec 8u and having 6 teams at rec 15-17u (because there aren't enough teams without combining age groups) says a LOT about the state of baseball in GA.

What you are wanting exists...there is ZERO shame in playing baseball at a rec park. So why aren't you? It's $220 for a 13u kid to play at a rec park, their season is the beginning of March to Mid May. I wish more people would play rec.

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Punishers

628 Posts

Posted - 03/14/2019 :  09:46:16  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
You would at least thing that the scoreboards are working for that price.

quote:
Originally posted by RUSemiPro

Yep, all about the benjamins....

PG and DiamondCast $40 for a yearly subscription. At first I was like cool, I don't have to do GameChanger and have parents get up set etc... But the Kids they have doing DiamondCast are inconsistent to say the least, and those stats are used by PG. I couldn't begin to tell you this weekend how many ROE were scored as hits. Sometimes Velo recorded, sometimes not.

Worst of all is ECB scoreboards don't work and we are paying 625/650 plus another 150 for gate and you don't have working scoreboards??

It's borderline insane.

quote:
Originally posted by Boomstick

Yep, you are correct. Itís preposterous that we pay what we do to play in these tourneys...but we continue to. Iíd love for better options because at this age, nobody is evaluating our kids for college/pro anyway. He just needs reps against good players until he gets older.

When PG was at lakepoint, ok, itís nice as you take the field 5 minutes after the rain clears instead of having yonplay mudball like we did this weekend, so maybe a premium makes sense, but EC is no Lakepoint, nor are most of the parks they play their tourneys in. And PG is unlikely to cancel tourneys due to weather unless the field is under a foot of water because itís all about the benjamins for them.

If the less expensive alternatives start drawing the better teams, it could help bring change, but it will take organization by someone with resources/connections and everybody saying ďENOUGH ALREADY!Ē before that will ever happen.



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oldtimer21

2 Posts

Posted - 03/14/2019 :  14:55:12  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
My son is not playing rec. ball because IF he did, he would not see good enough competition to play in High School. At least not for the high school that is in our district. If you're child needed to attend a special school for Science because he excelled in that subject, but the local PS83 didn't meet their needs. Would you just sit there and say, "ok. Well, good luck kid. This is your local option that's cheaper and is most convenient?"

And I do agree that there has been a serious de-emphasis by parents to play at the rec level. Some places have been able to do this, like Buckhead and NYO. But look at Georgia's little league world series team last year. Most, if not all, played on a travel ball team as well as the little league. I don't mind paying to play in quality tournaments, but again, $800 to play for a weekend is ridiculous. Like RUSemiPro said, it's all about the Benjamin's.
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CaCO3Girl

1966 Posts

Posted - 03/14/2019 :  15:26:18  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by oldtimer21

My son is not playing rec. ball because IF he did, he would not see good enough competition to play in High School. At least not for the high school that is in our district. If you're child needed to attend a special school for Science because he excelled in that subject, but the local PS83 didn't meet their needs. Would you just sit there and say, "ok. Well, good luck kid. This is your local option that's cheaper and is most convenient?"

And I do agree that there has been a serious de-emphasis by parents to play at the rec level. Some places have been able to do this, like Buckhead and NYO. But look at Georgia's little league world series team last year. Most, if not all, played on a travel ball team as well as the little league. I don't mind paying to play in quality tournaments, but again, $800 to play for a weekend is ridiculous. Like RUSemiPro said, it's all about the Benjamin's.



You said:
"My son is not playing rec. ball because IF he did, he would not see good enough competition to play in High School. At least not for the high school that is in our district."

....I can understand and appreciate that. Some schools you need to be absolute rock stars to get on with the team and the local rec park kids can't compete. I actually heard a high school coach say "he plays a different kind of baseball"....so I can understand that point.

Then you said:

"If you're child needed to attend a special school for Science because he excelled in that subject, "

.....and there it is...that special science school is going to cost you an extra $1K per month AT LEAST....so really travel ball is a much cheaper option....but if you want to play against the best you have to pay.

The average PG tourney for older age groups is $1500 a team, and then you will also have 20-25 kids per team so your kid may be sitting 3 out of 7 games.

Youth baseball is a racket for sure, but it's also a business. I'm not saying your specific kid isn't special, maybe he is, but over 75% of the travel ball players in GA are NOT special at all. However, as long as these parents continue to pay the $1500-$5000 fees they will continue to charge them.

There is also nothing wrong with a great coach taking over a rec team and actually turning the rec parks into something that could compete at the high school level. It seems anyone that has any skill at coaching, and some with zero skill, are being paid $5-$10K to "coach" a travel team, rather than volunteer to coach a rec team.
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CoachTowns

49 Posts

Posted - 03/18/2019 :  13:45:59  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I love when CaCO3Girl chimes in. She brings the TRUTH every time.
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baseball713

44 Posts

Posted - 03/18/2019 :  16:16:10  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by oldtimer21

My son is not playing rec. ball because IF he did, he would not see good enough competition to play in High School.



Isn't this the issue? Everyone thinks their kid is special and is too good for rec ball, so they go travel. This becomes a self fulfilling prophecy where all the decent talents leave rec ball along with the special talents. I'm just as guilty of this.

quote:
Originally posted by oldtimer21

If you're child needed to attend a special school for Science because he excelled in that subject, but the local PS83 didn't meet their needs. Would you just sit there and say, "ok. Well, good luck kid. This is your local option that's cheaper and is most convenient?"



This analogy doesn't apply at all. The difference with this analogy is that the special school or magnet school truly requires a certain level of talent. In travel ball, you can find a team regardless of the talent as long as you can pay. Imagine if we limit travel team to only 5 teams per age group. These travel teams are going to screen for talent, not just ability to pay.
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