There is the optimal age to start and then the finish line where you can’t or is extremely unlikely to reach a competitive team in all sports, including baseball. This raises the question of how late is too late to start baseball? Let’s find out.
In general, 18 is too old to start baseball if you wish to get into a college team or MLB someday. However, it is never too late to start a sport if you want to do it recreationally. Thus, you can start baseball as long as you can bat, throw, catch, and run.
Yes, there have been MLB debuts by people over 30-years old. However, you need to consider that these players often started their first MLB match in the 1900s when the competition and skill standards were considerably lower.
Fast forward to the 2020s and beyond, the competition is so high, and the skill standards are over the moon, so if you were to want to be accepted in a college team or to the MLB someday, 18 years old is too late as you are so far behind other people.
Nothing is impossible in sports, so if you have a background in other sports, are athletic, and are a fast learner, it would be possible to get in even when you start at 18 or later. Still, baseball varies from other sports so much, so even if you had a great background in sports, it might not aid you as much in baseball.
It comes down to that don’t get your expectations too high if your goal is to reach a competitive team, and you are 18 or older. In life, you should always try the thing you wish to do so that you at least tried, so if that is your dream, go for it! And know if you don’t reach a competitive team, you can always find recreational teams to join and have fun without all the stress!
Does Age Matter in Baseball?
Age is one of the biggest things that influence our life from start to finish. There are different milestones on how we think, act, and perform within the timeline of our age. So, what’s the deal with baseball?
Age matters drastically in baseball as young adults are at their peak in physical strength, mental alertness, and overall atheism. Adults in middle age start to see numerous small changes in their bodies, making their performance, strength, and mental focus slowly decline.
If one thing is universally known for all, age affects most things we do. How drastic this difference is depends on the individuals’ life choices such as physical and mental exercise, quality of food, and luck.
According to livehealthy.com, both men and women reach their physical peak in their late 20’s to early 30s, where muscle mass, strength, and flexibility start to decline.
However, it isn’t as simple as that because, as I said, individual choices affect the aging process so that it can be slowed down considerably. There are people in their 60s in better shape than people in their 20s.
What Is the Best Age to Start Baseball?
If you want to provide the best possible chances for your kid to have excellent skills in baseball later in life, what is the best age to start baseball?
The age of five is the best age to start baseball. A child can start baseball at the age of four or even three; however, their focus and body tend to be underdeveloped at this early in life, making it hard to teach them anything.
The first place for the kids to start baseball is T-ball. T-ball is the first entry-level division accessible for children aged 4 to 7. In t-ball, the focus is on having fun, fitness, and familiarization the fundamentals of baseball as it should.
Please don’t force your young child to learn baseball too fast because you risk losing the joy and excitement they find in baseball. If this goes on too long, the child might not want to play baseball ever again. I have seen this happen many times with other sports, such as ice hockey and football.
Fast-forwarding to the ages of eight and older. A child starting baseball at eight or older would be behind the early starters, yet this isn’t late by any means! It’s funny and crazy how some people seriously ask whether my child is too late to start learning baseball at eight? Absolutely not! However, it isn’t the optimal time as it is five.
At What Age Do Baseball Players Peak?
So far, we have learned that age is a big factor in baseball and how you can position yourself within the baseball world. This raises the question, what is the absolute best age for a baseball player? What is the peak?
The average baseball peak age is 29, within the age group of 28-30. This is when their acquired skills are at their peak without seeing a decline in their physical performance and bodies. The exact peak age depends on genes and life choices.
This goes well with the statement above by livehealthy, suggesting that both men and women reach their physical peak in the late 20s and early 30s.
At What Age Do Baseball Players Decline?
Considering that the peak age for baseball players is 28-30 years old, when does the decline start?
Baseball players start to decline in performance right after their peak years after the age of 30. The decline is normal and slow, yet it will happen. When the decline has started, it will continue as long as the person is ultimately out of the team.
What I mean by out of the team is if you are playing in a competitive league. If you play just for fun recreationally, there often aren’t any major performance standards that would determine whether you are on the team or not.
So why does the decline happen? As we get older, our bodies start to get old with us, meaning that our muscle mass, strength, speed, and even focus will worsen over time.
The age of 30 and older is still young! A peak won’t be a peak if there aren’t any uphill and downhill, and both are necessary in life. Don’t let it stress, though, as you can still play baseball to the end, and you often find other joys in life along the way.
How Old Can You Be to Tryout for MLB?
So your dream is to be in Major League Baseball? That’s amazing! There are some important things to know regarding the age requirements for MLB. For starters, how old can you be to try out for MLB?
To try out for MLB, you must be at least 16 years old; however, there is no upper age limit. To play in the MLB, you must be 18-years old if you are a US citizen, and if you are international, the age is set at 17 years old.
If you have started baseball at an older age than the optimal one but still wish to be an MLB player someday, there are major position differences in difficulty. Thus, you should know the easiest position to get into at an older age. You must choose one position to try out in the tryouts and no more.
The outfield is generally considered the best position at an older age. As an outfielder, you will require skills; there is no doubt in that. However, the outfield is far simpler than the infield as you need to think a lot in the infield, and that is one skill that requires a lot of time to master. That’s why outfield is a great position to play with less experience.
What Is the Average Age of an MLB Player?
After hearing all of this information considering age and baseball, you must be curious about the average age in the highest possible level of baseball.
I know I was. Below you’ll find the average age by every MLB team and the overall average at the end. Note that the averages are from the 2020 roster.
|MLB Team||Average Player Age|
|New York Yankees||29|
|San Francisco Giants||29.7|
|New York Mets||29.3|
|St. Louis Cardinals||28.7|
|Tampa Bay Rays||28|
|Boston Red Sox||28.6|
|Chicago White Sox||28.4|
|Los Angeles Dodgers||28|
|Los Angeles Angels||28.5|
|Kansas City Royals||28|
|Toronto Blue Jays||27.9|
|San Diego Padres||26.7|
|All MLB Teams||28,66|
As you can see, the oldest team by age is Washington Nationals, with an average age of 30.1, and the youngest is the San Diego Padres, with an average age of 26.7. The average age of the whole MLB resulted in 28,66, which is quite accurate with the peak age of baseball players!
My Favorite Baseball Equipment
Thanks for reading this article. I hope it brought you great value that you can implement into your own life! Below you can find my favorite baseball bat, baseballs, and a glove that I think will take your game to the next level!
- Bat: My favorite baseball bat is the Easton Project 3 Fuze. This bat has a composite end cap, reduced post-impact vibrations, balanced swing weight for the fastest swing speed, and a carbon core that makes this bat perform very well! As I’m not a professional baseball player, I like to use alloy bats as you can swing faster and hit further.
- Baseballs: Rawlings Competition Grade Practice Balls are my choice for something to hit. I love these balls because they fit all levels of play, so regardless of who you are playing with, you can use them. They come in a 6 or 12 balls box, and you can choose between raised or flat seams! I prefer flat seams as the balls tend to fly further!
- Glove: When it comes to the glove, my choice is the Rawlings Sandlot Glove. This glove is available for both lefties and righties. The same glove is also available for infielders, outfielders, pitchers, catchers, and 1B mitt. This glove has a nice vintage look, and it’s made from oiled leather. It has palm pads that protect your hand from impact, and it is pre-broken-in, so you are good to go as soon as you have it! A glove I’m proud to recommend.
- Fan Equipment: If you’re a fan more than a player, you don’t want to miss Fan Equipment by Fanatics. You can find items from various sports that bear your favorite team’s logo, such as jerseys, gift ideas, or other surprising things.