There is a lot of discussion around the travel ball world these days around the ever-growing number of teams.
The question is, do we really need so many teams when it looks like a lot of teams are always looking for players? Of course, pitchers are number one on every posts wish list with catchers and “big bats” not far behind.
This is a loaded question if there ever was one. How many teams is too many is like the old art is in the eye of the beholder. If your daughter really wants to pitch or play shortstop and she can’t find a team that will offer her that opportunity, is it wrong to start a team to accommodate her dreams? Told you it was a loaded question.
I’m pretty old-school and I was brought up in a world where if you weren’t good enough to make the team, your parents told you to get over it, work harder and try again next year. I do think we have too many teams because there are a lot of weak teams.
But, who says all the teams that exist have to meet my standard of “good”? Right, who am I to be the judge of whether a team is good enough to exist. And is it really important for all teams to be good as long as the players playing on those teams have fun playing the game?
Now, if some of the weaker teams that are just playing to allow the players to play would realize that they are in that category, I think we could really solve this perceived problem. If a team realizes where they fit into the food chain, then everyone will be happier.
Why do we think there are too many teams? When a weak team plays way above their ability level and gets drilled, it reinforces the idea that there are too many weak teams.
If the weak teams play against each other the games are exciting, the players have fun and whether it is “great” softball or not isn’t really a question anymore.
So there aren’t too many teams. There are too many blowouts because teams venture outside their lanes.