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Son was asked to move up an age group - advice needed

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So today was the first "tryout" for my son's age group for baseball (ages 7-8). Basically we have 3 days where kids go through different drills and then the coaches will "draft" them (besides their own children, who automatically are on their teams).

 

My son is already an exceptional athlete (didn't get it from me) and big/built for his age (did get that from me), but after the drills today me and one other parent were asked to stay by one of the league guys, and he asked us if we would let our boys move up a class since they were pretty far ahead of the rest. I like the idea of him getting to compete with older kids, but really this is his first year of real baseball since he was too young and had to play teeball last year (missed age cutoff by about 2 weeks). The other parent was all in but they seemed a little hyper competitive for their kid, so I wanted to see what you guys would do.

 

Now I'm a coach, and I don't know if it would be better to let him struggle some in a sport for the first time in his life, or just have him give me a list of names of friends that I haven't already coached in basketball/football with him and draft his buddies. He is kind of a weird one, he is really competitive and does a lot of drills on his own and even wants to "lift" with me (nightly push ups, sit ups, and assisted pull ups followed by stretching) so I think he will have fun either way.

 

I'd just like some outside perspective from the forum - I don't need to answer until Thursday afternoon for his next practice. Thanks guys.

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If he moves up and you think he will be the worse kid by a significant margin he shouldnt move up. But if hes going from the best kid to a middle of the pack kid i would move him up. And keep him up as long as hes not the worst player. 

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What does he want to do?

Do that.

He’s 8, this is about him having fun with friends.  Let him decide.

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When I was 8, same thing happened to me. They asked my Dad to move me up to the next league, which we did. Instead of dominating the league I should have been in, I was playing 2 innings, getting 1 at bat and sitting on the bench in the higher league. It's about having fun and playing

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40 minutes ago, LETSGOBROWNIES said:

What does he want to do?

Do that.

He’s 8, this is about him having fun with friends.  Let him decide.

Bingo. At this age, it's about having fun. Don't put too much pressure on him now. Let him decide.

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1 hour ago, LETSGOBROWNIES said:

What does he want to do?

Do that.

He’s 8, this is about him having fun with friends.  Let him decide.

dammit. you got the objectively correct answer and we are only on page 1

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I agree with @LETSGOBROWNIES. Talk to your kid, see what he wants to do. It's his decision, let him make the one he feels is best for him. 

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I think pushing to challenge him is a good idea.  Looking back now, I wish my parents had challenged me more often when I was around that age. 

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If you think basbeall is something he is going to want to do at a much higher level (college minors) and will have the ability to do so, that would be the only reason to move him up

 

otherwise, let him enjoy being a kid and having fun with his friends.  Some of my best friends in school were made during little league, and the older kids will move up a school before your son ever does which could make it awkward socially

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Posted (edited)

My brother and I went through this when we were little. We both played on traveling baseball teams that were highly competitive and we were both ahead of our age groups, and ultimately that competition and the friends you make while doing so carried us through high school and into college, and we're friends with some of those same people today.

However, a large part of that is because baseball was our primary sport. Your son may not be in that same position, so moving him up a level and challenging him at a sport that he may not like as much as my brother and I did could potentially be a mistake. As others have said, I would just talk to your son and see what he wants to do. 

If when you move him up he's just going to ride the bench and not play, I wouldn't do it. I would always choose reps and playing time and being with friends over not playing just to say you were at a higher level.

Edited by Darth Pees

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8 minutes ago, Darth Pees said:

If when you move him up he's just going to ride the bench and not play, I wouldn't do it. I would always choose reps and playing time and being with friends over not playing just to say you were at a higher level.

As a bit of background - you played some baseball in college, right?

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Doesn't he wanna play with his friends, who I assume aren't moving up?

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4 minutes ago, EliteTexan80 said:

As a bit of background - you played some baseball in college, right?

Yeah. My path was weird. In high school I didn't even play varsity until my senior year after I transferred schools, and then I went to JuCo for one year then University as a closer for the next 3.

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22 minutes ago, bucsfan333 said:

Doesn't he wanna play with his friends, who I assume aren't moving up?

He's an 8 year old boy, his criteria for friends is 1) being roughly the same size and 2) being in the same area. He'd be able to make friends in a different division.

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