Should my daughter play rec ball, or travel ball?
There are several differences between “rec ball” (short for recreational ball) and travel ball, but first let me say that I do not have an affinity towards either one.
They both have their place, and serve the softball community well.
My unofficial guess is that 100 percent of all travel ball players started out in a rec ball league (with a parent volunteering their time to help).
Rec ball is ideal for a child to learn the game of softball at her own pace; this is typically done alongside other players close to her own skill level.
Note: this skill level can range from first-time players to players ready to transition into travel ball. Understand that most rec ball leagues focus on the development of players first, and the competition of the game second.
Rec ball leagues
Some leagues even have a limit on the number of innings that one girl can pitch which allows for the development of other pitchers on a team. This also keeps teams from dominating with one pitcher.
Additionally, a pitcher’s limit on innings can give a dominate player the chance to develop her skills at another position.
Rec leagues also usually have a playoff system at the end of each season. The structure is such that a team that struggled at the beginning of the season has a chance to win the in-league tournament at the end of the season.
This gives all the teams something to look forward to that aren’t in first place. It’s also a way to give the teams that improve over the course of the season a chance to play for a championship.
In conclusion, most players at the rec level play for their city or community. This gives them a bond with other student-athletes from their school, and neighborhood. Plus, playing against you friends, and neighbors can be fun.
Refer back to this blog for part two on Thursday of this week.