This blog is designed to have a intelligent conversation about baseball. This blog is not to be used for putting down people, for bashing coaches or leagues. Its intended to have a mature conversation about baseball. Anyone using derogoratory comments, or using inappropriate language, you will be removed immediately immediately from this blog and blocked.
To start the blog off I would like to have a discussion about baseball in Washington County. What amazes me is the amount of travel teams in our league. I mean their are probabaly 30 plus teams in the area. I could have swore I saw travel ball for like 8U. Ill use the age group of our league to make my points. Our league consisits of 12-14. And we only encourage strong 12's to play and tell them not to miss Little League practices or games. And we do that out of respect for the young man and the League. And Little League and Pony League are 2 seperate organizations. We dont have to do that, we do it becasue we want the young man to enjoy his experience in Little League.
Now you have the Hagerstown Pony League and there is no doubt if you grew up around the area it's the MOST SUCCESSFUL LEAGUE IN TOWN. We have been to the World Series 5 of the last 6 years and have made the 3rd most appearnances in the World Series in the United States.
The League was designed from the dimensions of the field to the size of the mound and base paths to help the young teen as his body is still growing to develop the skills he will need for when he enters the big field at the high school level.
Now if your a parent of a child what would be your reasoning when you leave Little League not to play Pony League?
Heres the FACTS about travel ball that people dont want to admit. Its become a huge money making scam. There are travel teams out there that charge kids $2400, $1500, $1000, JUST TO BE ON THE TEAM LOL! And your responsible for getting the kid to the games, feeding him, and to house him. And hes 13 or 14. Are you kidding me?: I havnt even gotten into the competition aspect of it, where half the teams cant walk and chew gum at the same time. And what I cant seem to grasp is why people would want to traverl every single weekend to play baseball when they have a local league right in their backyard. Here's some more facts: Most of the people running these programs are teachers and people looking to suppliment thier income. Im not saying anything is wrong with that, but those are the facts. Second, if you think any scout is signing your son or giving him a full ride at 13-14 yrs old then I have some real esate I want to see you in the Middle East lol. I mean that is just mind blowing for people to think that. And the main point is quite simply the field is too big for 95% of the kids that play it. They cant make the throws; the field engulfs them. In athletics when you go from level to level be it football, basketball or baseball, the SPEED OF THE GAME INCREASES! When you,leave Little League if you go the play travel ball the speed of the game decreases. Its real simple. Your not helping your kid by doing that; your actually hurting him by doing it. And I truely believe some parents think saying their son is playing on some travel team they think its some sort of status thing.
The Pony League used to be that all the kids came from all the Leagues and if you really wanted to see where you stood as a ball player you competed against the best from all of our leagues in town. Were striving to get back to that. Our current team that is going to the World Series may get to play South Korea, Puerto Rico, Mexico, California, Texas, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Netherlands. What travel ball tournament are you playing in has those countries in it? Were not playing for States, were playing to see where they stack up in the entire World!
Feedback is what I am looking for. I have friends who do travel ball and I would like to hear their reasoning for it. Please dont use the bad coaches thing. Every League has their share of people that arnt baseball genuises, my answer to that would be simple; GET INVOLVED!
WE WANT KIDS FROM OUR AREA TO HAVE A CHANCE TO GO TO CALIFORNIA AND WASHINGTON PA EVERY YEAR AND EXPERIENCE THE WORLD SERIES. MEMORIES THAT WILL LAST A LIFETIME.!
Thanks for taking the time to read this.
David Barr/Player Agent