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What is the goal to all of this?

Aug 8, 2019
I’m a relatively new softball parent. I grew up playing sports in my local summer league and in my high school. I didn’t travel all over or play year round or go to national tournaments or scout camps or showcases. I ended up being a scholar-athlete in college for basketball. Starting point guard for my team.

With that being said, why nowadays, is there such a huge push to start kids super young on very competitive teams/leagues, send them to XYZ prospect camp, etc? I’m probably naive when it comes to how kids get noticed by college recruits. But, if a kid is good enough, like I was (due to hard work on my own time, not travel ball) why is it necessary to start kids at 6/7 years old, playing competitive travel ball? Yeah, the competition is greater, but on an individual level, does better competition really make an athlete better? There has to be a limit. Just because I play against Michael Jordan, doesn’t mean I’m going to be like Mike. This all just doesn’t add up to me, at this point. Again, I’m a fairly new softball parent.
I'm wondering the same thing. My daughter plays Rec ball for a organization here in Pittsburgh but doesn't want to commit to a travel team that plays 10 to 15 tournaments between summer and fall. I keep getting asked by other coaches and organizations why she won't try out ( plus she is a pretty good pitcher ) and I tell them it's entirely too many games. Was considering starting my own travel ball team but not play so many tournaments and stay local to keep the cost down. Probably won't happen but thought it was a good idea.