HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Youth travel baseball teams are in Madison, Alabama participating in the first Rocket City Baseball Classic at Toyota Field. The summer athletic circuit beginning for area clubs, including the Madison Express. The global pandemic causing major problems for teams to come together.
“It’s been very difficult,” Madison Express assistant coach Scott Clark said. “We’ve been a travel team for a couple of years, so we weren’t sure what we were going to do, because half of our team was with James Clemens, half of them were with Bob Jones. What we’ve been able to do is have our own (American) Legion team. When we heard about this tournament we got it going pretty quickly.”
For years, travel baseball team cost could be very expensive. Just three years ago Travel baseball averaged out to $3,700 per year. A family could pay up to $8,000 if they opt for extra training services along out-of-state tournaments.
“If you get a bunch of fathers that know the game, that would be your least expensive to do,” Clark added. “It can be pretty expensive.”
As cost rose, more regional travel teams began developing, which makes it easier for teams to play each other closer to home.
“When my kids were younger we had to travel a lot farther to play baseball. Now a days you don’t essentially have to be a travel team. You can play at Cullman, you can play in Florence, just an hour away. That’s a lot better, which has decreased the cost.”
The Rocket City Baseball Classic runs through Saturday. Games will also be played at James Clemens High School.