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Grapevine Baseball & Softball

General GBS Softball Information

Grapevine Baseball and Softball offers both recreational level and select level of play for softball players. Girls aged 3-18 are encouraged to participate in GBS (girls are also allowed in baseball as well, if you prefer).

Recreational Softball will always be our top priority for softball play in Grapevine but for those looking for a more advanced level of play, we have outlined some questions below that should be considered if you're interested in learning more about select softball.

For more information, please reach out to our softball commissioners with any questions you may have.



Is Your Daughter Ready to Play Select/Travel Ball?


Recreation fast pitch softball (Rec Ball) and select/travel fast pitch softball (Select Ball) both serve a purpose in the development of a fast pitch softball player.  Traditionally, it is Rec Ball where the game is first introduced and the basic skills learned and honed.  This is usually done through a community league (i.e. GBS) with parents playing several volunteer roles.  At some point, the player “plateaus” and is looking for stiffer competition and a more regimented training program to get to the next level.  This logical progression can be confirmed by talking to any high school/college fast pitch softball player who will tell you that without Rec and Select Ball, they would not be where they are today.  The key to this progression is to determine when the right time is to move your daughter to Select Ball.  In making this decision it is important to take several factors into consideration.

  1. Player Abilities, Interests and Commitment
    1. Do They Stand Out in Rec Ball?
      • Are they one of the key players on the team? Bat at the top of the line-up?
      • For pitchers, have they pitched at least 20 games? High win %? Have several balls they throw – change up, drop, curve, cutter, fastball, rise ball.
      • Their team is in the top tier of their division?
      • Red flag would be players in outfield, especially in younger divisions, and batting in bottom of order.
      • Are they able to compete at the next age level comfortably?
    2. Is Your Daughter Interested/Loves the Fast Pitch Game?
      • Do they often talk about their games? Sport? Friends that play?
      • Do they watch high school/college/professional games?
      • Do they have a favorite player/team?
    3. Are Your Daughter and Your Family Willing to Make the Commitment?
      • Select Ball usually consumes entire weekends to play tournaments. (Friday from 5PM through Sunday at 6PM)
      • In Select Ball, travel is unavoidable along with related costs pending the age. Younger Athletes do not travel as far as the older athletes.
      • Select Ball fees are significant. You pay all costs, possibly including coaches. Average tournaments are $450 plus you pay at the plate $35/$40 a game.
      • Player ASA cards must obtained at a cost to play in those tournaments.
      • Each coach has to register their teams with ASA, USSSA and VTD if you playing in those tournaments – those cost anywhere from $35.00 per team to $450 per team.
      • Equipment – Most teams need bownets, balls for games, bags that match, etc
      • Uniforms – since you play in so many tournaments, most select teams have a practice uniform and two tournament uniforms, sometimes with matching cleats, jackets, hoodies, etc.
      • Most Select Ball teams require players to practice twice during the week and have “specialty” coaches (pitching, batting, catching, position play etc.).
      • In Select Ball, there is no guarantee that players will play every game and/or tournament, but generally are required to attend and pay anyway. They are all listed on the roster no matter what.
  2. Organizational Structure and Code of Conduct
    • Most Rec Ball leagues are established and have good reputations.
    • GBS has a code of conduct that all volunteers must follow.
    • GBS also has a formal grievance process to handle complaints.
    • Some Select Ball teams also have this infrastructure in place and may even by sponsored by a Rec league. However, other Select Ball teams may not. Be wary of “independent” Select Ball teams that are not affiliated with a Rec league and/or are relatively new.
  3. Cost
    • The cost to play on a Select team can vary greatly based on many factors (i.e. uniforms, paid vs volunteer coaching, number of tournaments, travel vs local only).

Recommendations

First, talk to your daughter and see if she is really on board with the commitment and significant challenges that Select Ball will present. Next, talk with league commissioners, coaches and other parents to determine/validate the skill level of your daughter. Also, discuss other options such as moving up a division to provide more competition and development opportunity for your daughter. Assuming your daughter is still a candidate for Select Ball, it is imperative that you discuss with family members the costs and time commitment. If it is a go, then you need to hunt for the right select team.

In choosing a select team, go to MANY team practices and games. Talk to parents of team members and get their perspective on other teams and advice. The best way to do this is to go to a Select Ball tournament and view several teams and meet other parents. Parents will generally be very honest in assessing the teams and their coaches. Once you have narrowed the field, ask the organization for the following information:

  • What is the estimated cost per season per player? Are accounting records open to parents for review?
  • Where are practices held and are the fields scheduled or is it a first-come, first-served situation? Independent Select teams are not sponsored by a Rec league and, therefore, may not have desirable or reliable practice field arrangements.
  • Can your daughter attend a practice or two in advance of try-outs/selection? This will allow you to confirm if your daughter is a match for the coaching style and team, as well as the higher Select Ball practice intensity. It will also allow you to see how your daughter’s skills compare to established Select Ball players.
  • Are there try-outs? What defines the selection process? Be wary of Select Ball teams that do not require try-outs. Try-outs are a sign that coaches are forming a competitive team, not simply trying to fill their roster.
  • Who coaches the team? How are coaches selected? Are parents allowed to coach? Does your perspective on coaching align with the team or organization?
  • Is there a Code of Conduct for coaches, players and parents? What is the process for filing a grievance or resolving conflicts? Is it the coach’s way or the highway?

The important thing to remember is that Select Ball is not a Rec All Star Team with fancy uniforms!! As a result, you will need to do your homework to ensure a pleasurable, rewarding experience for you, your family and your daughter.

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Grapevine Baseball & Softball

1175 Municipal Way 
Grapevine, Texas 76051


Phone : 817-410-3457
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