Parents will be so proud when their child is accepted onto the high school baseball team.
Playing a sport is a great activity to keep kids busy and focused. But, there can be some drawbacks to sports that all parents must consider before signing their child onto the team.
An Insiders Look at High School Baseball
You should take a good look at the time and commitment of parents when your child plays high school baseball. It takes more than you may think at first to keep up with them and their team.
No More Weekends for You
Baseball games are most often played in the evenings during the week and also on weekends. Players are usually expected to be on site about an hour before the game starts and they usually stay around 30 minutes after the game ends. The games also last up to 2 hours plus more if the score is tied and more innings are played to declare a winner. So, adding this up means you will need to set aside at least 3 1/2 hours for each baseball game plus your driving time to the game and home again. As you can see, this is quite a time-consuming item for not only your child but for you as well. Even if you take turns with other player’s parents in a carpool, you will need to take your turn too. There can also be a pizza party after a game and if their team is competitive, they will most likely participate in baseball tournaments, which include anywhere from 3 to 6 games over a weekend.
Sports are Expensive
You may be responsible for league fees, team dues and uniforms for your child to participate in the high school baseball team. In addition, their equipment will need to be purchased, such as a helmet, a bat, cleats and baseball bags. This all adds up to several hundred dollars. In addition, if your child plays travel ball, there are additional tournament fees and travel expenses. Most likely, your child’s team will have fundraisers to offset some of these costs for you. It’s a good idea to participate as much as possible because when more funds are raised, your expenses will be lower accordingly. For more information on this, see The Ultimate Guide to Baseball Fundraising.
You Will Drive a Portable Locker Room
Parents generally like to keep the family vehicle clean on the outside and neat and tidy inside. You will need to get ready to save your quarters for the vacuum at the car wash now. Even if your child, and others when it’s your turn to carpool, are careful, the orange dirt that is ground into the uniforms and the muddy grass that is stuck in their cleats will get into your vehicle. Usually, kids aren’t the most cautious and they toss their stuff into the trunk and plop themselves on your leather seats that were shiny at one time before baseball came into play.
You Are Not the Coach or the Umpire!
We’ve all seen it before. The overzealous parents are in the bleachers trying to be the coach and the umpire all at the same time. Keep in mind, that most of the time coaches are just parents that volunteer for this job. They take the time to be a sort of mentor to the team players and in doing so, give up their spare time. Keep in mind that coaches and umpires are just people as you are. They may make a bad decision or a mistake and some can even lose their cool at times. No matter what the case, it’s never good for parents to interject into a game or even at practice for that matter. This will ultimately embarrass your kid and it will not sit well with the team leader or other parents on the sidelines. Remember too, that an umpire can actually give you the boot if you get mouthy with them.
The Loss of Friends and the Gain of Family
You will have much less time to spend leisurely hanging out with friends on the weekends and will not be going on weekend trips to the beach anymore. Some of your friends that you did hang out with may just not keep in contact and you will have little free time to talk or even to text to them except short messages. You will start to look around you and realize that when your kids play high school baseball, your new social circle is mostly made up of parents on your child’s team. When this happens, you may lose a few friends, but you are gaining an entirely new large family. You will spend so much time with baseball families that you will soon form the inevitable bond with them when you start to think alike and spend so much time together. The other parents get how crazy your life is–because theirs are too. You will become to realize the other parents are there for you, just as you are for them. Many lifelong friendships start with baseball families and they last long after the children are grown and move away.
These five things are considerations before your child starts playing high school baseball. Not all parents know everything they need to in advance and then they feel they are blindsided by certain items. It takes a bunch of money, time and commitment to be a baseball mom and dad.