I recently had a difference of opinion with another softball parent. I sometimes notice that some travel ball players do not continue to play in their local recreational league once they make a travel team. My opinion is that they should always continue to play rec league in addition to travel ball, at least until they get to high school, since most teams usually only enter 6-8 travel tournaments in a season. I believe the extra play in rec league is beneficial to the player, as well as the local league.
My counterpart, whose daughter only plays travel ball, believes that there is not enough talent and competition in rec league to benefit the better players. Well, I agree if all the better players abandon rec for travel ball exclusivly. If they all played both, this concern would not exist. It all starts with recreational leagues, so i think it is important to keep them going strong.
TB vs. League play
My daughter has played TB for 2 years now (she is 12) We don’t play league ball for 2 reasons…. 1) she will be bored playing down, the slower pitching will screw up her batting (she can’t hit a slow pitcher) and 2) traveling on the weekends and TB practice during the week, the isn’t much time to play league, plus, I have a high school boy that plays baseball….not much time left
Travel Ball is better choice-for us
by: RS in PA
My DD made the transition to TB easily because she had superior talent to the Rec Ball Players. When we were deciding, I aske her, “Do you want to be a big fish in a small pond or do you want to see if you can be a big fis in a bigger pond?” Her competitive side (12 years in gymnstics) made the decision easy. TB raises the level of a players game. They are palying with and against better players-they can’t help but get better. Also, the risk of injury is grater in rec ball due to the players and coaches inexpeience.
GO WITH TRAVEL BALL EXCLUSIVELY-if your DD has the talent and drive
My DD is only doing travel as her Rec coach thinks the Rec team comes first and I say TB comes first, already been through this with him so chose TB.I have 2 other DDs playing rec ball as they are just not as intense as the other when it comes to playing.The league they play in lost a lot of girls to TB as they want better competition then they are getting from the rec scene.But hey it is a parents and kids choice of which they want ot play or play both, neither is right or wrong IMO.
I would have liked for my daughter to continue rec ball, but the fact was that there was little competition or challenge. The last time that we went for tryouts, the coach told her that she would have to stop throwing so hard, because the girls were scared to catch it. As a serious ball player, that was just un-acceptable. If your local rec team has good players and your daughter wants to play, then by all means, go for it.
Hoping for a balance
by: John A.
My daughter is going to be playing travel ball this spring for the first time but I plan to keep her in rec league as well. We’ll evaluate it at the end of the season and see how it works out.
The main reason I’m going to do that is to provide some balance. Travel ball is obviously going to be a lot more intense than what we’re used to in rec, so my hope is that by staying in rec as well she will use rec as a means to just have a good time without worrying about performance. We can also use rec to work on things in game situations.