Updated: Aug 1, 2019
When I was in middle school I was a B and C student. The summer after my 8th grade year I started to get serious about playing college baseball and decided that I had to start getting good grades. If Harvard (or whatever great school) was the only option I would end up getting, I did not want to be limited. From that point forward I got really good grades because I wanted to give myself every opportunity to play baseball in college. Getting good grades is mostly just effort. I understand some kids are naturally better at school or are put in a better position to succeed, however if you are not the best at school, don't use this as an excuse to limit your future opportunities. You can get good grades if you work hard enough. I know of many instances where players had scholarships at very good schools and all they had to do was keep their grades up. When they were unable to do so, they lost that opportunity and had to go another route that hurt their careers. Don't let great opportunities go to waste because you don't put in the effort in the classroom. I will say it again, you can get good grades if you work hard enough not matter who you are or whatever situation you are in.
I'm going to give you another reason academics are incredibly important. You are not going to college for D1 basketball or football where everyone gets a full scholarship. Division 1 baseball is still hurt by the NCAA's rule that they only get 11.7 scholarships, D2 gets 9, while D3 schools get no athletic aid. This means it is incredibly unlikely that you will get between 50-100% of a scholarship worth of athletic aid at a D1 or D2 school and will get none if you go D3. Depending on where you want to go and how much it costs to go there, a partial scholarship may not be enough for your family to afford. Academics could be the difference. Most schools offer a package of scholarships to entice their potential new players. This means if they offer you a 25% athletic scholarship and you have good grades and get another 25% scholarship from academics, now you are looking at a 50% scholarship and now you have the opportunity to go to that school. By getting good grades you are vastly expanding the list of schools you can go to just by being able to get in and get more scholarship money.
--Things to take away