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For many serious high school baseball players, achieving a D1 status will often be their end goal for every game. Not only are D1 players more commonly scouted by great colleges in the future, playing in D1 often means you’re the cream of the crop.
But if you are new to high school baseball, you might be wondering what is D1 and how can you become one?
Essentially, D1 in baseball refers to Division 1 – a top classification that is designed for teams hoping to compete at high-level competitions. While not many high school players can attain the status of being a D1 player, many will often perceive D1 as their dreams.
So, how does an aspiring high school baseball player achieve the D1 status? Let’s find out.
How do I become a D1 baseball player?
Many serious high school baseball players will eventually hope to become a D1 player someday. Unfortunately, the sad truth is that not everyone can achieve the D1 status or are as good as they assume.
If you’re hoping to train to be a D1 baseball player, here are some tips to help you reach for your dreams.
Speak to your coach
Although this may seem obvious, many high school players make the mistake of not discussing their plans with their coach. Call it teenage confidence if you may, but having a word with your coach will help you and your coach devise a better training plan ahead.
Many coaches are often happy to help you achieve your dreams, but it’s a move that requires you to take the first step. Allow your coaches to assess your play, or if you’re taking lessons outside of school, you could ask them for tips on how to reach for D1 too.
Catch a game to watch D1 players on the field
If you’re hoping to be a D1 player, one of the best ways to learn is by watching the others play. Make your way to any D1 players’ batting and training sessions, and watch them in their form. Compare them to your own, and you’ll be surprised to see the difference.
Most D1 players would also be happy to give you tips on how to be a D1 player yourself, so don’t be ashamed to ask for tips as you watch them play. The important thing is to give yourself time to grow since D1 players have essentially been training for years ahead.
Visit a college camp
This is a tip that is best done if you already have a D1 school in mind. Be sure not to close your heart to any opportunities out there – instead, it may be a better choice to pick several schools that you can choose from.
Once you’re narrowed down on your pick, do look out for college camp sessions to attend and learn from the players and coaches while you’re there. College camps are a great way to ask for feedback, so don’t be shy to ask the coaches what they think of you.
Send out training videos of yourself
Similarly, you should also reach out to D1 coaches by showing them your play style. Sending out training videos of yourself is a great way to put your capabilities under a coach’s radar and receive feedback while you’re at it.
If a coach turns you down on your first application, don’t be disheartened. Instead, this is the ideal opportunity for you to ask them how you can do better. Many coaches prefer to train players who are keen to learn than players who refuse to change for the better.
Focus on your strengths
Although many coaches would love to have a well-rounded player, it may be just as important to focus on what your strengths are. If you’re looking to be a D1 pitcher, focus on making your best pitches and ask for pointers on how to do better.
While being a jack-of-all-trades is a good idea, it’s always better to be a master of one before you move on to picking up new playing skills when you’re aiming to play in D1.
Work on your determination
Finally, if you’re hoping to achieve a D1 status, then you’ll have to work on your determination. Training to be a D1 baseball player will often take a lot of time and effort, making it a difficult route to take for many high school players.
Instead of being discouraged, you should set several short term goals and a long term goal for yourself. Stay determined to achieve your goals, and don’t give up even if you come across a shortcoming.
This way, even if you fail to be a D1 player by the end of the day, at least you would feel that you’ve tried your best and work to continuously better yourself.
Do D1 baseball players have higher scholarship opportunities?
Many high school baseball players may assume that being a D1 player secures them better scholarship opportunities. While this is true to a certain degree, most baseball scholarships can be difficult to land because of the widespread competition from schools nationwide.
See More: Baseball Scholarships
Am I allowed to walk-on to D1 teams?
Walk-on refers to a situation when a player has not been formally recruited into a baseball team. Although rare, some baseball players may be allowed to walk-on to selected D1 teams.
This is often subject to the coach’s discretion as they may already have a preferred walk-on player in mind.