Thunder Baseball 2024 - What to Expect
We appreciate your interest in our program. On this page, we'll do our best to lay out how we expect the next year to go
We conduct a “pro-style” baseball tryout, modified to reflect the age of the players. This includes evaluations of each player’s running speed, throwing accuracy and strength, and skill at fielding, hitting, and where applicable, pitching. Players are evaluated by a range of coaches, board members, and other members of our organization.
For tryouts at Liberty H.S., please bring tennis shoes or turfs, as well as plastic cleats. No metal cleats, sunflower seeds, or gum are allowed at this facility.
What to expect after tryouts
We plan to begin making offers shortly after tryouts, but with the need for makeup tryouts, etc., don’t draw conclusions from the fact that you do not immediately receive a call. However, the fluid nature of the process means that if your child receives an offer to join a Thunder Baseball team, the coaches will expect a response within 24 hours. We know this is both an exciting and stressful time of the year, and are committed to handling the process as quickly and transparently as possible. If you have not heard from the Thunder and are contemplating an offer from another organization, feel free to contact the applicable coach for an update.
Individual teams will be officially announced at https://ohio-thunder.com/teams as soon as they have been formed. Average roster size is 10-12 players.
If you were given an offer to join a Thunder team and you accept a roster spot, you will be expected to pay a non-refundable $400 deposit within 72 hours of your acceptance. This deposit will be credited towards your final fees.
You should expect a mandatory program-wide “Parents Meeting” in the fall, to outline what to expect for the upcoming season. Individual teams will probably schedule their own meetings, to introduce new players and explain their plans. Depending on community conditions, this may be in-person or via video chat.
Some Thunder teams practice and/or play a few games in the fall; others don’t. As an organization, we strongly support multi-sport athletes, and conflicts with fall or winter sports are not held against anyone. By the same token, we generally expect our players to make baseball a priority during baseball season, which generally runs from March through June-July.
The Thunder organization has actively fundraised over the years to help offset organizational fees. The Thunder expects all families to participate. We have been fortunate in past years to raise over $20-$30K. These fundraisers have dramatically reduced the overall player fees and have contributed to field improvement and maintenance.
There are many factors that contribute to player fees. Detailed fee summaries are available, displaying team cost and credits. Some examples of these costs are:
- Umpires: ($50-110 per umpire, per game, depending on age groups and whether an umpire works alone or with a partner).
- Indoor and Outdoor Field rental. We play on the finest fields in central Ohio, and gratefully support our host programs.
- Tournaments: Range from $300- $1500 per tournament depending on age group.
- Game Balls: The average cost $50 per dozen.
- Equipment: Practice baseballs, catcher’s equipment, hitting tees, etc.
- Organizational: COYBL league membership, insurance, website fees, etc.
More detail about our finances can be found here.
The Thunder organization will have a uniform fitting in the late fall. You will be expected to pay for all your uniform and personal equipment costs at the time of the fitting. For a new player in the organization, this can be between $350-$400 per player. Included in player uniform and equipment cost are: Helmets, Bat Packs, Hoodies, Jerseys, Pants, Tee Shirts, Hats etc.
We work very closely with our uniform vendors to receive significant discounts on uniforms and equipment and strive to pass these savings onto each player.
While bats, gloves, and cleats are not included in the uniform cost, the Thunder does have relationships with major manufacturers that offer deeply discounted pricing to our ballplayers.