Most high school baseball players dream of playing college baseball. The dream scenario is to get a D1 scholarship to the school of your choice.
But hold on...there are some things you should know about NCAA scholarships for baseball athletes.
#1 There is (basically) no such thing as a full ride Division 1 baseball scholarship
College baseball scholarships differ completely from college baseball and college football scholarships.
Football and basketball scholarships are full rides. All scholarship players get all expenses paid while on scholarship. This includes tuition, means and housing. Walk on athletes do not get these same benefits, but they can earn scholarships.
Baseball scholarships are divided up amongst multiple players. They range from 25% (the bare minimum allowed) to 70%. Although it is not against the rules to provide a full ride scholarship, it is nearly unheard of. The players that typically receive the highest scholarship amounts are pitchers, catchers, shortstops, center fielders and advanced hitters.
The good news though, is that there is a new NCAA proposal to fully fund scholarships for baseball soon. It remains to be seen if that happens though.
#2 Division III Schools cannot offer athletic scholarships like Division I teams, but Division II can
Bummer, I know. Baseball players can still receive other scholarships, just not for playing. (source) Division II schools may offer baseball scholarships, but they are limited to 9.0 scholarships per year.
#3 There are 298 total D1 college baseball programs in the United States in 2022
The average Division 1 roster is 36 players, so that is around. (source)
#4 The maximum number of scholarships per program per year is 11.7
This number can be divided between a maximum of 27 players on a 35-player roster
This means there is almost always room for walk ons! (source)
#5 The minimum Division 1 baseball scholarship is 25%.
Walk ons are the only players on the team who get less than 25% with a big fat 0%. (source)
#6 Once you begin playing at a college, you cannot be drafted by an MLB team for at least 3 years.
Many Division 1 players are drafted in high school. If they forgo signing with the team that drafted them and they begin activities with their college, they are not eligible for the draft again for 3 years. (Source)
#7 The odds of a US high school baseball player making any college roster are 8:1
11.8% of high school baseball players will compete at some level of college. (source)
#8 The odds of a US high school baseball player making an NCAA division I roster are 47:1
Remember, this doesn't mean a full ride, or even any scholarship at all since walk ons make up some of each roster. (source)
#9 47% of MLB players played college baseball
There is plenty of reason to forgo being drafted out of highschool. It's shown that it doesn't seem to have a negative impact on a player's chances of making the big leagues. In fact, only 34.5% are drafted out of high school. The rest are international signees. (Source)
#10 Players from the state of Georgia have the best odds of making a division I team (24:1) while players from Maine have the lowest chances (181:1)
There are several variables at play here, but the large difference in odds is still surprising. (Source)