For all of you new baseball parents out there asking yourselves the question, “When will my son grow taller?”, I have some advice:
Seriously, just stop asking and stop thinking about it.
I’m a parent of one of those kids, I’ve asked myself that same question over and over for about 10 years now, and I’d love to save you the trouble.
First off, there’s not a damned thing you can do about it. Yeah, you can feed him more, but he’s going to grow when his time comes. And if you have obesity in your genes, you’ll have to be careful about feeding him too much trying to get him taller.
Secondly, size really doesn’t keep your kid from playing the game and having fun, and that’s what’s important. The time and energy you spend worrying about him getting bigger should be spent helping him grow his skills. Just make sure you’re doing everything you can to help him with his hitting, defense, and most importantly attitude.
And for goodness sake, please don’t let him hear you say he’s too small. EVER. If he loves playing baseball, then you want him to think he has every opportunity to thrive just like anyone else out there on the field.
Believe me, there are going to be some frustrating moments, like seeing your kid get passed over for opportunities because they’re being given to the bigger kids. We’ve seen many.
Travel ball teams love to have big kids. That’s just the way it is. Big hitters and big pitchers tend to have more power. But those are things your kid can work on. He should be out on the tee every possible day swinging that bat to increase his bat speed and perfect his technique. Those are things he can do without any help and they cost zero dollars. Check out YouTube because there are hundreds of free hitting videos to get tips from.
Keep in mind this one super interesting and important fact: Jose Altuve was the 2017 MLB American League MVP.
He’s 5′ 6″.
And, he beat out Aaron Judge who is 6′ 7″ and 285 pounds. That’s just amazing! Jose Altuve hits bombs. He had 24 home runs last year, along with 32 stolen bases.
Did I mention he’s 5′ 6″?
So maybe your kid’s not going to the MLB. I’m just trying to show you that he can have a great youth baseball career even if he’s not tall. And if he does want to play in high school, college, and beyond, it’s totally possible.
There is one other thing you might want to consider doing. You could hold your son back a year like we did. We decided to have our son repeat 8th grade and sent him to a private school in order to do so. Some kids are just late bloomers and we wanted to give him one last opportunity to grow.
One thing that helped us make our decision was seeing an X-ray of his arm after a small injury, at which time the doctor told us that his growth plates were wide open and that he had a lot of growing to do.
For us, the decision was also based on the fact that he was somewhat academically immature and could also benefit from having that extra year. I don’t regret our decision at all, but I know it’s not for everyone. My son is a pretty good athlete and if college is even a slight possibility, then I want every advantage that we can get, because he loves the game.
In writing this, I looked around online at some posts by several men who said they didn’t have a growth spurt until they were 17 or 18, even though research shows that most boys are pretty much grown to their full height by age 16. Boys also have growth spurts that start and stop, so they may grow a lot at one time and then not grow again for a while. I personally know guys that were short their whole lives and after 18 grew to 6′ 2″ & 6′ 4″. You just never know what growth pattern your kid will follow.
Please just take my advice and don’t be discouraged if your son is the small kid. It is what it is and if he’s having fun, then you just have fun, too. Did I mention that my son is 5′ 6″?