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  • When should HS players start looking at colleges?

    With my oldest entering HS this year, I'm wondering when we should start worrying about college recruiting. With my son being a freshman this year, I know it's too early now, but coaches have mentioned playing in some of the camps where recruiters are there, saying if a player makes a good impression they will continue to follow him through HS. Is the summer after freshman year too early? It seems if you're good enough to get play at the next level you'll still get noticed after your sophomore or junior year. This is all hitting me by surprise. Just two years ago we were getting ready for his last year of LL Majors, and now people are asking us about what colleges we're considering.

  • #2
    Originally posted by azmatsfan View Post
    With my oldest entering HS this year, I'm wondering when we should start worrying about college recruiting. With my son being a freshman this year, I know it's too early now, but coaches have mentioned playing in some of the camps where recruiters are there, saying if a player makes a good impression they will continue to follow him through HS. Is the summer after freshman year too early? It seems if you're good enough to get play at the next level you'll still get noticed after your sophomore or junior year. This is all hitting me by surprise. Just two years ago we were getting ready for his last year of LL Majors, and now people are asking us about what colleges we're considering.
    Honestly, you should start now. Start researching schools and schools that you like and believe that your son can play at, you might attend a camp. Only if you believe he will make a good impression. The summer of after his sophomore year ramp it up and then the summer after his junior year is the most important. Colleges start putting players on their watch board as early as the freshman year.

    With all of the showcases that are available it is important to get seen. Your son can be a very good player that can and should play in college but if he doesn't get out and get seen he will not get recruited. Remember, he and you are the only ones that will help get him recruited. Yes, you may get help from coaches but it is up to you guys to make sure he gets seen. Playing high school is no longer enough unless he just man handles everyone and even then it is hard to get noticed.

    I have a player at my HS who is 6'3" and 230lbs. Runs a 6.7 60 yard, hits bombs, is a quality pitcher who played on one scout team where they turned him into a catcher. This kid is a stud. problem is, he doesn't make contact with any college coaches. He doesn't attend showcases. He is not getting recruited.

    You have to get yourself recruited. Get a video made and update it at least every year. This way they can see progress every year. Most importantly keep the grades up.

    I also have players who are getting recruited because they worked hard at getting recruited and were in the right place at the right time.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by HYP View Post
      Honestly, you should start now. Start researching schools and schools that you like and believe that your son can play at, you might attend a camp. Only if you believe he will make a good impression. The summer of after his sophomore year ramp it up and then the summer after his junior year is the most important. Colleges start putting players on their watch board as early as the freshman year.

      With all of the showcases that are available it is important to get seen. Your son can be a very good player that can and should play in college but if he doesn't get out and get seen he will not get recruited. Remember, he and you are the only ones that will help get him recruited. Yes, you may get help from coaches but it is up to you guys to make sure he gets seen. Playing high school is no longer enough unless he just man handles everyone and even then it is hard to get noticed.

      I have a player at my HS who is 6'3" and 230lbs. Runs a 6.7 60 yard, hits bombs, is a quality pitcher who played on one scout team where they turned him into a catcher. This kid is a stud. problem is, he doesn't make contact with any college coaches. He doesn't attend showcases. He is not getting recruited.

      You have to get yourself recruited. Get a video made and update it at least every year. This way they can see progress every year. Most importantly keep the grades up.

      I also have players who are getting recruited because they worked hard at getting recruited and were in the right place at the right time.
      I absolutely agree with all of this. When I was recruited for college it was very tough. I had to supply the colleges with game video of myself, because I lived in the middle of the desert, and away from all D1 colleges. However, I traveled to those colleges to attend their camps. I attended many college camps throughout California my Sophmore, Junior, and Senior year. Try and make contacts during these clinics, and showcases. My father helped me out a lot with creating contacts with the "grown-ups".

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      • #4
        Unless your son is already a monster stud it's too soon to showcase. It doesn't make sense to showcase until you know what kind of player he will be. You probably can't even target where he potentially could play college ball yet. The first thing he needs to do is prove he can play high school ball and at least 16U. What you can start doing is attending the various levels of college ball to see what it takes to play at each level. I recommend you join hsbaseball web.com. It's full of parents with kids going through the process, kids who are now playing college ball and kids now playing pro ball. There are also high school coaches, college coaches, showcase coaches and pro scouts on the site.

        From personal experience the kids I know who showcased after soph year of high school were already showing a lot of potential and were invited to play on showcase teams. My son was followed by a couple of showcase teams starting at 14U after 8th grade. By summer after junior year you have a better idea of player potential. This is when most players showcase. Most showcase teams have tryouts before New Years so keep your eyes open.

        A question many kids never consider until they get to college baseball and discover they are unhappy is ... Do I want baseball to become a thirty hour per week job on top of getting to class, doing homework and trying to have a social life?

        Feel free to ask me questions anytime. I've been through the process with two kids. Its real difficult right now with your son's age and not knowing his physical stature, current abilityy and potential. I heavily recommend joining hsbaseballweb.com.
        Last edited by tg643; 01-05-2013, 11:55 AM.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by tg643 View Post
          Unless your son is already a monster stud it's too soon to showcase. It doesn't make sense to showcase until you know what kind of player he will be. You probably can't even target where he potentially could play college ball yet. The first thing he needs to do is prove he can play high school ball and at least 16U. What you can start doing is attending the various levels of college ball to see what it takes to play at each level. I recommend you join hsbaseball web.com. It's full of parents with kids going through the process, kids who are now playing college ball and kids now playing pro ball. There are also high school coaches, college coaches, showcase coaches and pro scouts on the site.

          From personal experience the kids I know who showcased after soph year of high school were already showing a lot of potential and were invited to play on showcase teams. My son was followed by a couple of showcase teams starting at 14U after 8th grade. By summer after junior year you have a better idea of player potential. This is when most players showcase. Most showcase teams have tryouts before New Years so keep your eyes open.

          A question many kids never consider until they get to college baseball and discover they are unhappy is ... Do I want baseball to become a thirty hour per week job on top of getting to class, doing homework and trying to have a social life?

          Feel free to ask me questions anytime. I've been through the process with two kids. Its real difficult right now with your son's age and not knowing his physical stature, current abilityy and potential. I heavily recommend joining hsbaseballweb.com.
          I agree with what you are saying but I do also believe that if the kid can play he should test the waters a little to get use to the showcase atmosphere. It can be a bit intimidating for a first time player. You don't want your first time to be the summer after your junior year.

          The bold: I agree 100%. It becomes a job. Dependent on your major, you may have 0 social life except on the baseball field. There are some majors that make it almost impossible to play baseball.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by HYP View Post
            I agree with what you are saying but I do also believe that if the kid can play he should test the waters a little to get use to the showcase atmosphere. It can be a bit intimidating for a first time player. You don't want your first time to be the summer after your junior year.

            The bold: I agree 100%. It becomes a job. Dependent on your major, you may have 0 social life except on the baseball field. There are some majors that make it almost impossible to play baseball.
            For kids who really aren't ready for showcasing after soph year I recommend attending a local college, one day camp in the fall of their junior year if it's run like a showcase event. These things usually only cost $100-150. In my son's case it was good he showcased summer after soph year. He was injured and missed the post junior summer. But he was ready. He was all all conference at short soph year and made the major sports page's Top Ten Shortstops list for a major metro area. Ironically the pro scout, assistant coach on the showcase team moved him to center. But that summer he played anywhere since sophs didn't get as much playing time as juniors since it's go time for juniors. You want to finish the post junior showcase season the end of July with a verbal commitment.
            Last edited by tg643; 01-05-2013, 12:41 PM.

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            • #7
              For anyone who has heard the NCAA limits college athletes to twenty hours of participation per week ...

              1) Try not showing up for "optional" weight and agility training.
              2) Travel time is not included in the twenty hours.

              Players miss classes. They sometimes have to reschedule tests, including finals. It's not easy getting to Monday morning classes after dragging yourself off a bus at 2am after a seven hour bus ride returning from a weekend road trip.
              Last edited by tg643; 01-05-2013, 12:48 PM.

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              • #8
                If your kid is a pitcher, don't worry about it. Work on his velocity. When he gets to 90, they'll find him Jr year.
                efastball.com - hitting and pitching fact checker

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by songtitle View Post
                  If your kid is a pitcher, don't worry about it. Work on his velocity. When he gets to 90, they'll find him Jr year.
                  Yep! Position play and hitting is subjective. Pitching potential is right there on the gun. But if a kid isn't hitting 90 he better get himself in front of some coaches.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by tg643 View Post
                    But if a kid isn't hitting 90 he better get himself in front of some coaches.
                    That's the twisted part about the recruiting process...
                    Rest in Peace Jose Fernandez (1992-2016)

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Francoeurstein View Post
                      That's the twisted part about the recruiting process...
                      It's not twisted at all. A major college coach is going to roster 17-18 pitchers. He only needs 10 to pan out each year. It's why 50% of D1 players transfer. So he might as well have hard throwers with stuff than pitchers where hitters can sit on their fastball when their stuff isn't working.

                      There's plenty of room for pitchers throwing 85-89 in mid major conferences and D2. There's room for 80-85 at the D3 level. Sometimes the pitchers at the mid major to D3 level develop velocity and become pro prospects. The key is find a place to get on the field, enjoy the ride and see how far you go. One of my friend's son grew four inches, put on thirty pounds and added 8mph to his fastball at a D3. He played two years of pro ball throwing 92.

                      The successful pitchers you see in MLB throwing under ninety typically threw 90 at one time. Over the years they developed incredible stuff along with great command and an incredible knowledge of hitter's weaknesses.

                      Add: When a pitcher comes into D1 ball throwing 90 it means he can hit 90. He's probably cruising at 87/88.
                      Last edited by tg643; 01-05-2013, 07:26 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by tg643 View Post
                        It's not twisted at all. A major college coach is going to roster 17-18 pitchers. He only needs 10 to pan out each year. It's why 50% of D1 players transfer. So he might as well have hard throwers with stuff than pitchers where hitters can sit on their fastball when their stuff isn't working.

                        There's plenty of room for pitchers throwing 85-89 in mid major conferences and D2. There's room for 80-85 at the D3 level. Sometimes the pitchers at the mid major to D3 level develop velocity and become pro prospects. The key is find a place to get on the field, enjoy the ride and see how far you go. One of my friend's son grew four inches, put on thirty pounds and added 8mph to his fastball at a D3. He played two years of pro ball throwing 92.

                        The successful pitchers you see in MLB throwing under ninety typically threw 90 at one time. Over the years they developed incredible stuff along with great command and an incredible knowledge of hitter's weaknesses.

                        Add: When a pitcher comes into D1 ball throwing 90 it means he can hit 90. He's probably cruising at 87/88.
                        If anyone watched Omaha last year 90 MPH pitches were not that common. Most of the guys were cruising upper 80s. I am sure many of these guys hit 90 at times, but for whatever reason they weren't hitting it. We live right by UCF and my buddy has a Stalker gun and season tickets behind the plate, and said even most UCF pitchers didn't hit 90 very often and they were a top-ranked team. The 90 readings he'd get were typically if a Florida or Florida St. was in town.

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                        • #13
                          Also given your kid's size Azmats if he is playing on any kind of major travel team that plays teams from Cali/Nevada etc. and doing well, then yes it's not too early to start thinking about it. Stealth's kid verbally committed to U-San Diego in 10th grade. One of my son's LL teammates verballed to SDSU in 10th grade despite being suspended from baseball in 9th grade for grades and not having played one inning of varsity ball (he made the varsity in 10th grade).

                          Now, if he's still very underdeveloped which based on previous conversations I think he is, then I would hold off, and do some off what TG is saying. Start going to some camps, etc.

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                          • #14
                            Thanks to everyone for the advice. I also looked through the information on HS Baseball Web. Honestly I'm surprised by the replies. I was expecting to be told not to worry about colleges until his Junior season of HS ball. It's good to know it's not too early to start considering options. My son and I have talked about going to a D1 college's camp this summer for the experience. Encinitas is right in remembering he's not fully developed. Although he's 6'3", his growth plates are still open, so he'll probably grow another three inches or so. Currently he's throwing in the mid 80's, so he can hopefully catch some eyes as his velocity increases in the next couple years. As far as his position playing, it's hard to predict if he'll develop into a D1 level player. I know most D1 schools don't have players who both pitch and play a position, so if that's his goal (which it is right now) his pitching is what will get him there. Unfortunately Arizona doesn't have a lot of in state opportunities. There are (or will be) three D1 schools, two elite (ASU and U of A) and Grand Canyon University which will be D1 by the time my son graduates HS. But that's it for 4-year colleges. I can't believe I'm even thinking about possible college opportunities so early. I'll probably be asking for advice as we go through this roller-coaster these next three years. Hopefully it will help other parents going through the same process.

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                            • #15
                              My son's (15 / soph.) going to a "prospects" camp this month. I'm not sure he's much of a D1 prospect at this point, but he's big and strong and might turn some heads. If not, it's a couple days on a college campus, some instruction, and probably a shot of motivation. He's looking forward to it.
                              There are two kinds of losers.....Those that don't do what they are told, and those that do only what they are told.

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