As the MIAA high school baseball season kicks into high gear, and players begin to perform at a high level, it's hard to avoid seeing the ongoing battle. Across social media feeds, high school and club programs scramble to take credit for on-field success.
The result has been an ongoing question on whether there needs to be a greater effort by the two sides to work in tandem throughout the year to help ensure the maturation of student-athletes.
"There's an onus on both sides to step up and show a willingness to work together for the betterment of the kid," Austin Prep coach and former Stampede program director JP Pollard said. "It's all about making a commitment to players and not having an ego on your own end."
As the presence of travel and club baseball has only grown in recent years so too has the underlying conflict between high school and external programs. Coaches bar over whether the opposing party is engaging in proper training techniques with their player. When players do not perform up to expectations - or even worse suffer injury - the two sides are often quick to place blame on each other.