Adolescent athletes are increasingly encouraged to specialize in a single sport year-round in an effort to receive a college scholarship. For collegiate baseball, only 11.7 scholarships are available for a 35-player team. The beliefs of the parents of baseball athletes towards sport specialization are unknown, along with whether they have an accurate understanding of college baseball scholarship availability. The parents of high school baseball athletes were recruited to complete an anonymous questionnaire that consisted of (1) parent and child demographics, (2) child baseball participation information, and (3) parent attitudes and beliefs regarding sport specialization and college baseball scholarships. One hundred and fifty-five parents participated in the questionnaire (female: 52.9%, age: 49.4 ± 5.5 years old). The parents spent a median of 3000 USD [Interquartile Range (IQR): 1500–6000] on their child’s baseball participation. Most parents believed that specialization increased their child’s chances of getting better at baseball (N = 121, 79.6%). The parents underestimated the number of college baseball scholarships available per team (median [IQR]: 5 [0–5]), but 55 parents (35.9%) believed it was likely that their child would receive a college baseball scholarship. Despite having a realistic understanding of the limited college scholarships available, the parents were optimistic that their child would receive a baseball scholarship.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited