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Thread: Red Flags or No?

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    I can talk softball all day CoachChristine's Avatar
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    Default Red Flags or No?

    Dd11 and I are in the market for a 12u tb team, so I've been talking to people and checking local Facebook groups.

    There's a new "sports academy " in a neighboring town that just opened in the past year or so. They have indoor cages, give lessons, cross fit classes, etc. Last month, they advertised that they were going to start 10u and 12u softball and baseball teams. They scheduled tryouts for this month. I messaged them last month to ask who is coaching 12u. They said they were interviewing for the position. Tonight, I messaged them again because the first tryout is tomorrow. They replied, "Still interviewing. That will come together as the teams form."

    Does this seem strange to anyone but me? How do you have tryouts with no coach? So they'll just hand someone a group of players and say "This is your team?" I'm wondering if this is just a money making idea for the place or what.

    I'd appreciate your thoughts.


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    Softball Junkie CMMom1740's Avatar
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    I've seen this too. Usually it results in costs twice that of most other travel ball teams, even if it's a B team and the A teams are half the cost.

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    Allergic to BS Strike2's Avatar
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    I've seen this where I live. They are usually legitimate in their aim, but building from scratch is always a challenge. They are in business to make money, so it will cost more than most any independent team, but perhaps no more than a higher-level organization. Whatever you pay will probably include cage time and perhaps some instruction. There's something to be said for having an established practice facility supporting a new ball team. In the first year, there may be some kind of tryout, but ultimately, the team is formed with those kids whose parents will pay the higher-than-average costs and sign the year-long contract typically associated with these types of teams.

    There will be some who can play, but others may have nothing but a year of rec ball in their past. The coaches may be parents who have some coaching background, but it will definitely be a crap-shoot as to experience and quality. If you're lucky, you might get an aspiring young coach who recently played college ball. If not, a rec-league veteran getting his first taste of competitive ball.

    What I've observed is that these "sports academy" teams start out well below average, but can improve as they go along. They may churn through a bunch of players during a season. As more girls are recruited, the coach figures out who can actually play, and the marginal players see more bench time and may eventually leave.

    If your kid is having trouble catching on with a "regular" travel ball team, this might be a "stepping stone" option.
    Last edited by Strike2; 07-15-2017 at 10:38 PM.

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    Softball Junkie Easton33's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CoachChristine View Post
    Dd11 and I are in the market for a 12u tb team, so I've been talking to people and checking local Facebook groups.

    There's a new "sports academy " in a neighboring town that just opened in the past year or so. They have indoor cages, give lessons, cross fit classes, etc. Last month, they advertised that they were going to start 10u and 12u softball and baseball teams. They scheduled tryouts for this month. I messaged them last month to ask who is coaching 12u. They said they were interviewing for the position. Tonight, I messaged them again because the first tryout is tomorrow. They replied, "Still interviewing. That will come together as the teams form."

    Does this seem strange to anyone but me? How do you have tryouts with no coach? So they'll just hand someone a group of players and say "This is your team?" I'm wondering if this is just a money making idea for the place or what.

    I'd appreciate your thoughts.


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    You are correct, it's all about the $$$. Hown else do you think they are gonna pay the bills for all that new stuff?

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    I can talk softball all day junkball's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CMMom1740 View Post
    I've seen this too. Usually it results in costs twice that of most other travel ball teams, even if it's a B team and the A teams are half the cost.

    Yep. "Team fees" will be low, but there will be certain expectations to participate in the facility's programs that will cost what seems like a few bucks here and and there, but it adds up to a lot of money and line the pockets of those involved in the org.

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    I can talk softball all day Gambler Bob's Avatar
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    I personally think it sounds a little odd for a organization not to have a head coach in line before tryouts. I know a lot of teams do not announce head coaches until the previous season is completely finished. Unlikely but it could be possible that this new organization is getting a coach from a different local organization and they don't want the general public to know what is going on until this season is over.
    Last edited by Gambler Bob; 07-15-2017 at 11:20 PM.

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  12. #7
    I can talk softball all day CoachChristine's Avatar
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    Thanks for the input. That's what I was reading between the lines.


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    I can talk softball all day Pop time 44's Avatar
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    My DD played for one of these sports academy teams. Yes, tryouts were held and the softball director evaluated. Head coach was named after the team was formed. They had several softball instructors and it was a matter of who was going to take which team. That was two years ago. That program crashed and folded. They were way overpriced actually. Coaches quit mid season. One whole team actually folded in between the Fall and Spring season. They had 12u's playing 16u because they didn't have enough players. I heard they got a new softball director and they are trying to restart the program. I can't see it surviving but who knows.


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    Certified softball maniac InsidePitch's Avatar
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    We never played for one of those teams but would have if the local place DD works at had SB. They have a number of baseball teams with many VERY good players. Their coaches on staff are assigned teams and they can change from season to season. Many of their kids have been there multiple years so I wouldn't automatically discount that set up but being new to the scene I may want to observe for a year unless they bring someone in you value as coach.

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    I can talk softball all day Pop time 44's Avatar
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    The program we were at has a very successful baseball program.


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