By Steve LaMontia, Director of Communications
As leagues are faced with the ultimate delay to the start of their MSBL seasons because of the coronavirus pandemic, we decided to post what measures leagues are taking to ensure their coordination with all of their players and share their comments on their start-up dates with our members across the country. League president updates will be added alphabetically as we receive them.
Antelope Valley, Bob Donaldson–As always, hope all are safe and healthy. Here is an update on the start of the Antelope Valley Men’s season. The City of Lancaster, CA is asking us to postpone the start of our season due to conditions of the virus situation. There has not been a new start date set as of yet. We do still plan to play our entire season. I will keep you updated with any new news as I receive it.
Antelope Valley, (Update 4/7)-As we all know, these are tough and uncertain times we are going through. Hope everyone is safe and healthy. At this time, I still plan on us to have a full season of baseball. Yes dates will be a bit skewed with us playing deep into the fall if things go well. Having had talks with the city, we might, I stress might, be able to start in the beginning of May. This is tentative as nothing is set in stone and circumstances change every day. Please keep your players informed and I will keep you managers up to date as I find out myself. As a side note, National is looking to talk to players about what they are doing baseball/life wise during these tough times. You can submit a player’s name/number and they will call to interview him. Again, stay healthy, be safe, we can work through this together. Feel free to text or email me with any questions or comments.
Arizona, Joe O’Brien-COVID-19 has forced all school districts to close. No Activities are allowed on any campus. City Parks are also shut down. The New CDC guidelines state not to allow a group of 10 or more, to limit the community spread of the Virus.
3-19-20 update: City Parks ( Mesa, Gilbert, Chandler, Phoenix)
are closed till April 10th. Salt River Facility has closed for now and our April 5th start date is now delayed until May. Our other Facilities do not begin till May and we have no word on them yet due to the ever-changing news. Once we get the all clear, we will evaluate field availability and move forward with a modified schedule asap. Our Goal is to play baseball, it may take some time, it may be different than years prior but we will play.
Atlanta, Don Pike-First and foremost, I hope you and your families are doing well. This is a very challenging time for us, our families which includes our players. I`m going to give you an update on our season, but I want to you to do a few things for me first.
- Check in on your players. See how they and their families are doing.
- Reassure them we will be playing ball this summer.
- Remind them that we have to take this pandemic seriously. If we do what is recommended by our local, state and federal government, the faster we get back on the fields
- We have young players. Most are just starting out in life. Some just got out of college and started jobs. There is no doubt that some of these players will face temporary layoffs over the next few weeks. It`s important that we keep this in mind when we do get back to baseball and collecting fees. We as managers will need to work with these players on fees.
All schools in Metro Atlanta have locked down campuses. No one is allowed on school property, unless authorized. High school baseball coaches are allowed on campus to mow fields once a week and that is it. Gwinnett, Cobb and DeKalb counties along with Atlanta City Schools will update me on their status around the first of the month. Peachtree Middle is shutdown until further notice.
I will re-evaluate our projected April 26th start date Easter weekend. If I need to push the start date back, you will know on the 13th. As most of you already know, I canceled the 2020 Billy Townsend Memorial Day Tournament. Its wasn`t something that I wanted to do, but it had to be done.
Again, please take care and follow the government’s recommendations on defeating COVID-19.
I`ve always put the league first and always will. Our players are the league.
(Update 3/29/2020)-All GA. school’s campus closed until April 27th . The earliest that we can get on fields is May 3rd. Do not hold practice on any field MSBL or non MSBL. Season start date to be re-evaluated on April 12th. Billy Townsend Memorial Tourney Canceled. Midweek league projected start date June 2nd.Do not hold practice on any field MSBL or non MSBL.Season start date to be re-evaluated on April 12th.
Austin MSBL, Mike Lucas–I hope all of you and your families are doing well and are safe! The City of Austin has initiated a policy of no gatherings of more than 10 people which obviously won’t allow us to play baseball. I want everyone to know the following:
1. Our season is set to resume on May 1st. We WILL get the season in, it may go on into the fall if necessary but we will get it in.
2. In 2007 I rescheduled 384 rain-out games and we got the entire season in! That year we finished in September.
3. All games in March are canceled. I will continue to cancel games on a week to two-week basis. If this thing gets lifted sooner then I want everyone ready to go.
4. All fields are getting their normal maintenance and are being worked on so they will be in the very best shape that they have ever been in.
5. From a scheduling point, Memorial Day Weekend and 4th of July Weekend would be excellent times to play make-up games so start talking to your teams about that.
The most important thing is that everyone stays healthy and safe and we will be playing baseball very soon!
Bay Area (San Francisco), Jim Frenn-To all managers and team reps: Hello, I hope you and your family are healthy. Things are changing so fast. My last email to you about looking at the new season starting in mid-April became obsolete and old news within a few days.
On March 20th I got an email from the San Francisco Giants that said: Following the updated recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) restricting events of more than 50 people for the next eight weeks, the opening of the 2020 regular season will be pushed back in accordance of that guidance. MLB might not open until mid-June, if at all. We’re tracking everything, hoping for the best and preparing for the worst. Eight weeks would put our opening day at about May 31st. Schools are saying they won’t open for the rest of the school year. I doubt municipal fields will return until May or June either. We will play ball when the fields are available and MLB returns.
Hopefully we can get in a couple of weekend practices and be ready to go June 7th or 14th. That’s the new target, and if players are willing to play the regular season into September, we can get 12-15 games played this year. This schedule could mean fewer postseason games. But hell, when we pull this off, I’m sure everyone would be happy to play baseball for as many games as possible.
Understand that we have not given up on this season and neither should you. No further team fees need to be paid until we have more certainty about the return of BAMSBL baseball. Be healthy!
“I don’t play golf. When I hit a ball I want someone else to go chase it.”
–Roger Hornsby/ Cardinals infielder (1915-26)
Boston, Jeff Coveney-To our players, managers and friends:
Over the last few weeks, we have all seen drastic changes at work, at home, and at schools as COVID-19 has become more widespread. This unfortunately has impacted the sport we love – baseball. Even MLB has postponed its games.
For our league, we are seeing impact at the local level. The state of Massachusetts has put restrictions on gatherings over 25. Towns are holding onto field permits. As a precautionary measure, we also canceled our March draft for the 18+ division.
Looking ahead, we will do whatever we can to get through this and get on the baseball field as soon as possible. We’ll revisit in a few weeks, but we should be prepared that opening day could get pushed back into May. Our league will follow the guidelines for activities as set by the State of Massachusetts, the CDC, and WHO
In the meantime, we encourage you to stay safe and practice social distancing. Yet, there’s no better time than now to play a game of catch with your kid or parent in the backyard, or get that swing going by hitting off a tee. Wishing you and your families the best of health during this time.
Boston (Update 4/5)–To summarize, we are hopefully to be back on the field at some point this season but baseball is taking a backseat at the moment
1) The health of our players is #1. We will not start the season until the state of Massachusetts says it’s safe to go back outside. Add four weeks to that date to account for updated permit requests and schedule making.
2) Possible Schedule. Numerous managers talked about the health of the players, what happens if we can’t play, should we play fall ball, etc. All valid comments. These are all things we will need to look at as we move forward
Right now, we are moving towards this below plan but these dates are in doubt.
With a current stay-at-home date of May 4th, the earliest we anticipate playing is the weekend of June 5/6th. However, that May 4th date is likely to change, thus pushing out any start date four additional weeks.
3) $75 for Heal for Meals. As a league, we will be supporting a cause called Heal with a Meal to support feeding our medical hereos with food from local restaurants. With all the financial situation, $75 will be added to your invoice so we can support this cause.
A separate email will be sent about getting players involved via video.
This is optional. If your team doesn’t want to participate or participate at a lower level, let us know right away. We will be making our first donation today.
This is our league’s trackable link. Any additional donations go back to the league: https://www.gofundme.com/m8rpe-helping-our-heroes…
4) Fall ball. We anticipate the season going longer this year into the fall to account for loss of spring games.
5) Fees Extended to May 4th. Times are tough for many financially at the moment. There is uncertainty around the season. We are extending the payment date for league fees until we know what the season might look like.This date is also likely to change as it’s aligned with the Mass back-to-work date.
6) Everything is Subject to Change. With everything above being said, life today is very different than a month ago and it will be different a month from now. Everything is subject to change. We’ll continue to monitor the situation and keep you updated.
Stay safe and stay positive.
Link to Manager’s Meeting Video on Facebook
P.S. On a personal note, many of you have reached out about my dad’s COVID situation. He is one of our league’s biggest supporters attending almost every game I played in/managed up until this past year. Unfortunately, his health has deteriorated over the last 24 hours and the outlook does not look positive. Thanks for keeping him in your thoughts.
Brandywine Valley (PA), Nolan Potter-We are scheduled to start our season with 4 (25+) teams on May 2nd. However, we will adjust our schedule accordingly per the guidance of State and Local Government. We are following the General guidance for Pennsylvanians, which includes staying home as much as possible and to not host or attend gatherings. Schools are closed through at least April 6.
Bux-Mont, Nick Chichilitti-Not much to say except we are looking forward to playing baseball when the local governments allow us to. Its outta our hands right now. In light of the Coronavirus situation, it does NOT seem feasible to start on April 5th. The 12th is Easter so the logical thing to do is push it back at least two weeks. We will make the games up during the season. Make no mistake about it, we WILL start at some point. I will re-visit the situation in two weeks. Its not the end of the world if we are forced to start on either April 26th or May 3rd as well. We can easily make the games up at the end of the season for the 45s and as DHs for the 28s and remain on track. We WILL get through this together and we’ll all be jonesing to play baseball whenever that may be, I’m sure!!! In the meantime, stay safe!!!
Capital District (NY), John Reel-The CDMSBL Board Directors conducted an emergency meeting about the upcoming season on Friday March 20th. The plan was to start the season the week of April 26th with the balance of team fees due April 1st. The progression of closures and regulations as had effects on these plans. We also depend on resources outside our control. It has become evident that our initial plans must change.
Further its evident, many of our players will lose income and be unable to pay their portion of team fees on time. Therefore, we are doing two things:
First, we are extending the due date of the balance of your Team fee to May 1. Second, we are delaying the start of the season to May 15th.
The League is committed to providing for a full season and I have asked each Commissioner to plan accordingly. Should the season be curtailed by this new plan or circumstances prevent its full execution,
refunds will be available and will be paid to you as GM’s . These refunds will be prorated by that portion “not played” less the fixed cost already encumbered. (such as insurance, MSBL dues and various expenses already incurred). The board will review these new plans and any subsequent plans. If refunds are in order, they will make the decisions on that. Please note team fees pay for the playoffs not just the regular season.
Our actions here are in hopes of preserving our CDMSBL 2020 season. We know our league provides a lot in our summer lives; camaraderie, healthy exercise, and competition. Amid this crisis, we want to give you hope and something to look forward to . In meantime, it is my prayer that everyone stay healthy. Remember we are a strong solid organization.
“we ain’t goin’ nowhere.”
Central Florida, Aaron Eberhardt-We currently are on hold to continue our season until the first week May. At this time we are currently on a day by day monitoring.
Central North Carolina-Rob Isbell-As for the CNCMSBL, I am revising the schedules and planning for a June 1st start of the season. That’ll leave us with a 3 -month season as we typically end on Labor Day and begin our playoffs following the holiday weekend. That tends to keep the players tuned up for those of us who play in the Arizona and Florida post season tournaments. We try to keep the league updated with information on our league website: CNCMSBL.COM.
Chesapeake, Jason Tores-The Chesapeake MSBL has decided to adhere to the CDC’s recommendation of avoiding gatherings of 50 or more people for at least 8 weeks. If not extended, this period will end on May 11th.
We feel that it is important to offer each of our teams their full 20+ game regular season, which we could do with an opening day as late as July 5th and ending date as late as September 20th. If opening day is delayed beyond May 12th, our plan is to incrementally reduce the scope of our playoff format, which historically runs about 3 weeks with fewer and fewer teams alive after each round, rather than to shorten the regular season.
Chicago Central, Matt Scott-The board has been researching and discussing the latest events concerning the COVID-19 pandemic.
The best-sourced evidence indicates that the outbreak should peak in the US around March 28th, after which the number of new cases will begin to decline, and life will slowly begin to return to normal. In the meantime, governments are putting out recommendations like the recent white house guidelines of restricting gatherings of more than 10 people. Businesses like bars and batting cages and park districts are closing up for weeks, making it hard to hold practices or gather player fees.
With this in mind, the board has decided that the best course of action is to delay the start to the 2020 season. Here is our plan: The season would start and end approximately three weeks later than originally planned. The spring managers meeting would be held the weekend of April 25/26.
The 43+ and 60+ leagues would start play no earlier than May 9th. Not all teams would start on the 9th, as that is Mother’s Day weekend, and a tough one to find field times on under normal circumstances. Some 60+ teams would start with crossover games on May 11.
The 30+ and 53+ leagues would start play just before or after Memorial Day weekend. Depending on field availability, we would be looking at games no earlier than about May 20th. Some teams that volunteered to would play on Memorial Day Weekend.
The 43+ and 60+ playoffs would begin September 12th. The 30+ and 53+ playoffs would begin October 3rd.
These changes should give us some room to get through the next few weeks of inactivity, while still enabling us to fit in a full, normal 20 game season.
These changes are tentative, and based on some assumptions, most notably the duration of the peak phase of the virus. Also, a number of our field contacts have ‘gone dark’ and stopped replying to emails about reservations, so the schedule may have to come out in pieces, as school and park district employees start returning to work and answering their messages.
Your patience and understanding is appreciated during this strange and unprecedented time. We will be in touch as events warrant.
Chicago North, Max Reising-Yes, these are trying times. I do believe we will get through this but there will be numerous hurdles for all of us. I have sent out some correspondence first to our managers and officers then to our player membership. I am currently working on our schedules with guarded optimism. I will put a synopsis email together with the messages that we’ve sent to our membership for you to add to your postings and distributions this week. Keep up the good work and stay well.
Cleveland, Tony Martin-An email went out to the managers stating that it is very likely the start of the season will be pushed back. No definite date yet, but I have a plan in place depending on when we start. We can still get all 16 games in if we start by May 17. Anything after that would result in a shortened season. But for this very minute, our opening day is still April 26.
Colorado Springs (Southern Colorado), Bud Maison-As you all may know, the Coronavirus precautions continue to be discussed and implemented. On Thursday, Colorado State suspended all spring sports until 6 April and many schools have closed until 30 Mar.
Yesterday I was notified that Colorado Springs Park and Recreation has closed all of its facilities until 6 April. Currently, this effects our preseason and opening day. ALL preseason games or scrimmages are cancelled. Managers are encouraged to use alternate facilities to host practices in smaller groups such as batting cages. Please do not use HS or Park and Rec fields as they are closed!
To adjust, our first week of play we will attempt to reschedule. Since Mother’s Day is on a Sunday, I would like to know which teams would like to compete on 11 Apr(Sat).. Otherwise, first week of play is now 18/19 April.
I appreciate your support! Please let me know if your team is interested in playing on 11 April. Please continue to collect player fees and make your team payment by the first week of play.
Columbus, Rick Fryman-It seems like we are in the same boat as all other leagues, in a holding pattern and just waiting. We use local HS fields and one city field for all our games. Schools are closed until April 6th (at least). City parks are closed. Basically we are waiting for the Governor and the Ohio High School Athletic Association to make more announcements before we can have discussions concerning fields with the respective coaches and AD’s. I am confident we will play baseball this season but most likely will be delayed.
(updated 3/30/2020)- This is more like looking into a crystal ball, but probably more on point than not. First, there is nothing definite yet.
Secondly, I think the dates below are a good possibility (but not 100%)
IF schools do go back into session, which I think may be May 4th at the earliest from what I can figure from President Trump’s statement yesterday on social distancing until April 30th, then I believe the following dates would be close to being accurate.
- May 17th – Draft/Tryout
- June 14th – Opening Day. This is open for discussion of course, but I feel that once people are allowed to get back to a normal, or close to normal, life, it will take some time to get everyone on the same page and organized. If we went this route, I would think a 16-18 game schedule is very possible, depending on fields of course.
IF schools are cancelled for remainder of school year, my fear is schools allowing us to use their fields. Since coaches and AD’s need the money I’m sure coaches would allow the usage, but School Boards can be a pain in the ass. So, we will see. I’m hoping we don’t have to go this route. If we have to go this route, I would think our season would start later than June 14th. IF we faced a start around July 1st I project we could do a 15 game season, depending on field availability. That would give us eight Sundays (no July 5th) and 11 Wednesdays, including two Wednesdays in September, to fit 15 games in for each team.
So basically, nothing is final or even close to being decided. Keep collecting money as we will adjust team fees if we have a shortened season. Please keep in contact with your players to keep them interested. I am confident somehow and someday we will play baseball this year.
Columbus MABL, Charles McCroskey-Our plan is to begin on May 3rd, 2020 (as of this email). I expect that to be delayed, but actually am hopeful more clarification will come down in the next week or so. I will provide update as soon as I know more.
Connecticut, Greg Schienda- At this point we are wait and see. Our 35+ division is scheduled to start April 26. The 25+ division has added a new team and the schedule is being revised. They are supposed to start April 19. I suggested they start April 26.
The schools in the state are shut down until at least April 20 so it is highly unlikely that we will start on the 19th. My plan is to see where we are at in two weeks and adjust as appropriate.
DCMSBL, Larry Lombardi-The DCMSBL administration is continually monitoring the constantly-changing Covid-19 situation.
FYI…the only update in field status since the 3/15/20 updated notice was the Montgomery County, MD (MNCPPC) Regional Parks. They have closed all of their fields through April 30. The Fairfax County Park Authority haven’t changed their position for when their park fields are to be open.
If we are still under restrictions due to COVID-19 and we can’t start our 18+ games on Sunday, April 5th, we will reschedule those games to Sunday, July, 26th. Safety is our first concern for all our players. We will get to play baseball this season and if it means we have to delay for a few more weeks, it’s not a big deal in the overall big picture.
For any 18+ teams unable to field a valid line-up for Sunday, April 5th, those games will also be rescheduled for Sunday, July 26th even if park fields are going to be open on Sunday, April 5th.
Please be safe, stay healthy and heed the advice from the national, state and local authorities regarding COVID-19. You can protect yourself and help prevent spreading the virus to others.
1) Wash your hands regularly for 20 seconds, with soap and water or alcohol-based hand rub
2) Cover your nose and mouth with a disposable tissue or flexed elbow when you cough or sneeze
3) Avoid close contact (1 meter or 3 feet) with people who are unwell
4) Stay home and self-isolate from others in the household if you feel unwell
Touch your eyes, nose, or mouth if your hands are not clean
Again, there is no reason for you to put yourself at risk. Please keep in mind, healthy, asymptomatic players may still spread the virus to those in their lives with weaker or compromised immune systems.
In the meantime, we will stay in-touch with your team managers with any updates and we please ask that you direct questions to them.
Delco (PA), Don Pizzo-Guys, I hope everyone is doing ok and staying safe during this corona virus outbreak. I know I’ve spoken to most of you over the last couple weeks but obviously the start of the season has been postponed. The situation is still so uncertain right now that we are just going to take it week by week. I’m positive we will be playing baseball this year. If you have any questions please call me or Chris. Thanks and be safe!
Detroit, Mike Juliano-We live in an unprecedented time for sure. I’m sure our state of Michigan is headed for a lockdown and will follow suit.
I am fully confident we will have a full season, as we start later that a lot of leagues. Our 18+ division doesn’t begin until May 12th and the other divisions start the week after that so we’re keeping our fingers crossed. If we don’t start until later, fine. We could scrap playoffs or shorten the season but the bottom line is that we’ll just have to see how it goes and adjust.
The younger divisions have the tightest timeline because they have to get back to school in late August but our other divisions can stretch it out well into September. Most everyone is on the same page. We have had to cancel our league meeting but hope to have it take place soon so that we can discuss our options.
Our league has actually grown this year to 49 teams and we have guaranteed them a 24 game schedule and we’ll get it done somehow.
Fairbanks (AK), Christoph Falke-Meetings and any momentum of jumping into the season are on hold. However email and text correspondence are working with keeping in touch with others in the league.
We are all going forward that we will have a season, just not advertising or setting any start date. Snow looks like it is going to stick around for awhile but hopefully by end of April the snow will be gone and we will have a better understanding as far as social distancing guidelines.
Will keep you in the loop as things develop.
Fresno, David Geiger- To all Fresno Men’s Baseball League managers and players, first of all, I hope everyone is doing well and your families are safe and healthy. I know like myself everyone is missing ball and wondering when our season will start. So, the honest answer is we really don’t have a concrete date as of yet. We will be ready to take advantage whenever we get the ok from the school districts and umpires we work with. No refunds will be issued as of right now. Please be patient as we diligently work to get our season going.
Keep yourselves and families safe during this pandemic. Before we know it, we will be back on the ball field playing the game we all love.
Greater Atlanta, Dick Walleshauser-We haven’t done anything besides change opening day so far. We are hoping to kickoff April 19th.
Greater Philadelphia-Brett Mandel–PANDEMIC PANIC POSTPONES THE GPMABL SEASON OPENER-With the world and the Greater Philadelphia region coping with the Coronavirus pandemic, the GPMABL will postpone the 2020 season opener until fields are cleared for play and social/sporting gatherings are safe for GPMABL players. Be safe, be smart, and be sane.
Houston, Joe Banasik-We have four divisions generally playing three different schedules due to the venues that they use, and the days of the week that they play. Some will start back sooner than others.
I hope you and your family are healthy and safe! Just to bring you up to date the city has implemented a stay at home order for Harris County as you know, and has also cancelled all permits and reservations through April 30. So this means they have cancelled our reservations through 4/30, and they have left 5/1 and beyond that date as-is. We have been issued a credit for the March and April permits that they cancelled, and we will be using that credit to add to the existing permit that now starts on 5/1 and ends in mid June.
30+ and 40+ update: The Spring Season for the 30+ and 40+ Divisions (that play weeknight only) has been pushed back to a 5/1 start, and it will continue through mid-July, weather permitting. The Sunday Open Division and 55+ Division are both scheduled to restart on Sun 4/19, assuming those venues open as they planned to do.
55+ update: I hope you and your family are staying safe and healthy. Just to give you an update, Northland Christian and Katy ISD Facilities remain closed until after Easter at this point. Both schools plan to reopen 4/13 so we look to resume your division on 4/19 which is the first Sunday after Easter. I have been in communications with Coach J of Morton Ranch HS, and Mrs. Lemm the Asst. AD at Northland Christian. All of these postponed games will be rescheduled at a later date just as if they were rainouts.
If in the event any of your players have changed their mind and ask for a refund, please note they will not be issued by the league. We have already spent the league fees collected on upfront expenses such as baseballs, permits, etc. that have to be paid for in advance of a season actually starting. We will, however, play a complete season without missing any games. It has just been delayed.
If you have any questions or concerns, please let me know. Otherwise be safe, protect your family, your job, or business, and be ready to hit the field when this is all over.
Thank you in advance for your cooperation and look for the schedule to be adjusted soon.
Houston (Update 4/2)- For safety for all concerning the COVID-19 virus and due to the newly issued ‘Stay at Home’ order by Harris County through 4/30, All Divisions have been postponed through 4/30. The new dates for the Spring Season for All Divisions will be May-July. The season will be played in its entirety in all divisions, just with a delayed start. Please be safe and stay healthy.
Hudson Valley, Rick Stockfield– After much reflection, we as a league have decided to postpone our season’s start until Monday May 4th. We originally were going to wait until some of the towns and municipalities got back to us, but the reality is, we are all in this together and even if some fields open, we not only know some may not, but that we’re not going to be out of this until at least until May and likely longer.
Your and your family’s safety are paramount. Some people are treating this thing like the plague, while others are treating this as a common cold. We’re somewhere in between. But let’s face it, we all must do our parts. Stay at home. Spend time with your families. We’ll all get through this. It’s not a matter if, but when. Stay at home. The more time we spend at home now, the quicker we can get through this time while also protecting ourselves and our loved ones.
If you do elect to get out with your teams, which I’m encouraging you not to, you will be doing so as an individual group and not representatives of the HVMSBL. I ask you NOT to step foot on any field the MSBL uses. Most are closed anyway.
All this said, best case now is a Monday May 4th start date. I will be adjusting our schedule to reflect that new start; had built in 3 weeks’ worth of dates the end of August, so rescheduling shouldn’t be difficult right now. I ask that you still pay your league dues to your managers, however. Once we do start, we’ll have to pay for fields, umpires and baseballs have already been paid for. Should we have to postpone further, we would start cutting weeks off the schedule and/or possibly move games into September. If we do have to cut weeks off the season, we will provide rebates/partial refunds to teams accordingly.
I feel confident we will be playing some part of our season, but only if we adhere to what medical professionals are telling us; stay at home.
Indiana, John DeCosta-We are monitoring developments in the national health emergency and the possible impact on our organization. As you know, the league is dependent on schools and other public locations for our fields, and all locations have closed campuses and suspended spring sports, including baseball programs. I have been in contact with our primary facilities and can report that we do not anticipate any disruption in our 2020 schedule at this point in time.
All locations are currently shut down until April 14. The reports I’m getting is that the schools will continue their baseball programs at that time.
We will maintain the April 19 date for 35+ and 45+ tryouts and the April 26th opening day for the 18+ and 25+. This is subject to change dependent on decisions by administrators at the various locations. You’ll be notified of any changes immediately. There are contingency plans and we can adapt as necessary. We anticipate that the 35+ and 45+ will start their seasons on schedule in the first week of June.
Throughout this time, it is important to take precautions. As teams get together for pre-season practices, please be careful. Do not take any risks with your health or the health of anyone else. If you are suffering symptoms or have been in contact with anyone who is symptomatic, STAY HOME. Getting through this difficult period is about teamwork, not only as a local organization, but as a nation as well. Be mindful that we need to defend others as well as ourselves. At the same time that you protect yourselves, protect those around you.
To further update our status, Indiana schools are currently closed until May 1. Consequently we have no access to fields. A decision was made to start the 18+ and 25+ on Sunday, May 31. They’ll play a full schedule with more doubleheaders to make up for not starting in April. This is not unlike what we’ve had to do in recent years because of the increased amount of rainouts we’ve had.
35+ and 45+ are still schedule to start the first week of June with no disruption to the schedule at this point.
Inland Northwest (WA), Bret Fink-Hello teams and Managers and prospective new players. We will be on hold until this pandemic is resolved we are planning for all scenarios of starting late to starting normal when things get better. For now I wanted to let everyone know what is going on and to take care of your families first and for most in this time.
If we should have to move the season back and run into Fall season we may cancel Fall season all together and just do our normal season, if we should get running at normal times then we will inform you.
Keep your arms loose by playing catch with your wife or kids. Get a tee and take practice swings the season will hopefully start on time or shortly after. Try-outs are still set for April 19th but we wont know anything for sure until they lift the ban on field use and facilities we may have to push it back also so keep checking back for more information here.
I talked to Steve Sigler President of MSBL/MABL National today and around the country all leagues are pushing their start dates back also so its not just here they are all saying they will get the season in and go down to Arizona for the Worlds Series in October with 363 teams showing interest this year in playing down there this year.
Managers if you have any questions or concerns dont hesitate to give me a call. We are still having our Online meeting Sunday 29th @ 2pm I sent out invites to all managers if you did not receive one please call me.
Jacksonville MABL, Joe Hellett-The current situation with the Jacksonville MABL is that we are in a holding pattern until the state opens up the Parks and Recreation in our county. We are still hopeful that we will be able to complete an entire regular season with a start date close to the original date of April 22nd. A more realistic date is May 3rd but with so much uncertainty there is no way to know. That said, it will be GAME ON once this virus passes and we have eleven teams extremely anxious to get back on the field!
Jersey Shore Mid-week, Gregg Balin-the Jersey Shore Mid Week League assumes play will start May 6, pending conditions at that time. We intend to play our usual 14 game season and will extend our playing dates to complete all games and playoffs into the Fall.
Kansas City, Tom Prendergast-We have received a couple of very positive signs from Johnson County Park and Rec. They sent out an email announcing that as of Monday, March 30th, all of our golf courses would reopen to the public.
I also received word from our sports league coordinator that we would be re-starting both our youth and adult outdoor leagues on May 10th. So, if this date holds, and it’s up to Johnson County Government and the CDC, we should be able to start our league games on Monday, May 18th.
Lehigh Valley, Turk Starniri-As we anticipated the start of our 32nd MSBL season we were aware of the COVID-19 Pandemic and its effect on all aspects of our lives. Consequently, after much discussion with managers and coaches, the Division Directors and I decided that for the safety of players, family and friends the first two weeks of the season will be postponed until May 3rd. If weeks three and four are postponed we will possibly extend the season into Labor Day and begin our playoffs the following week.
It is our goal to play the entire schedule including the postponed games and I have faith in all the teams to accomplish this.
The Lehigh Valley MSBL, one of the oldest MSBL leagues in the nation, will face this pandemic and rise above it. All teams in this league will reflect the American spirit and the league will be energized, enthusiastic and strong and will eventually take to the playing fields to begin 2020.
To the medical professionals and physicians who play in the league, and whose opinions I value, I thank you for your input and advice. I will have updates periodically and I will post them on our league website at www.lehighvalleymsbl.org
Long Island MSBL/MABL, Steve Sigler-These are high anxiety times for all of us. Five years ago, we had seven out of our first eight weekends rained out. We all thought how despairing that was, but, we got through the season with everyone having played a minimum of 14 games plus the playoffs. For this, we simply extended the season.
We are fully prepared for any delayed start dates and we are dedicated to have our 2020 season, even if it is somewhat shortened. We will update everyone on a week to week basis.
Long Island Midweek, Tim Hott-As you know COVID-19 has caused a huge change in how all of us currently behave and live. In our previous 30 years the only time we could not finish a season was after hurricane Sandy in October, 2012 and we will make every effort to start and finish the current one. But, for now, to avoid being part of the problem, we join with the current government recommended procedures and are delaying the start of the 2020 Summer season to Monday, May 4. We understand and concur with similar action taken by MSBL’s weekend league which deferred its start to Sunday, May 3.
If you are also part of the LS Wounded Warriors tournament you will receive a separate email addressing that cancellation and rescheduling.
In the interim please do your best to be part of the cure not the problem by complying with all recommended health and safety procedures. We wish you and your families all the best in health and happiness and look forward to the next time we can say “Play Ball”!
Mid-Iowa, John Linden-Currently there are no groups of 10 or more that can get together. We are kind of on hold waiting for field availability. Time is on our side, however, as we did not plan to start until mid to late May for 18+ and 30+ and June for 42+/48+.
Milwaukee/Rock, Jim Rinelli-We had a division president conference call meeting last night to discuss start dates and scheduling. We are following national and state protocol and have postponed the season until May 1. This will postpone the first two weeks of our season. We are having weekly division presidents calls every Tuesday night to review what is happening on the state and federal level with the COVID-19 outbreak and I relay the updates to our managers via weekly memos.
We have modeled several scheduling scenarios and we are able to get a full season in even if we were pushed back to late May as we have built in rain dates already scheduled and have the ability to push the season back a week or two if needed. We will continue to monitor and make scheduling changes as needed as we all know this is a very fluid situation and things can change day to day.
Milwaukee MSBL / Rock League Baseball has 49 teams in six age divisions and we are lucky enough to have our own facility with 4 fields and a minor league stadium. 5 of the 6 divisions plays their entire season right here on campus. We are all looking forward to getting back on the field as soon as it is deemed safe by the state of Wisconsin as well as other credible organizations.
I will give updates as needed, right now I’m going outside to play catch with my son and daughters. Hopefully you all can do the same!
Stay healthy and well.
MUNY-Buffalo, Ralph Proulx-A quick update on the 2020 season, with the way things are changing daily, nothing has been decided at the moment. We will be in a holding pattern like most of the world. I am not looking at canceling the season at this point. We may have to delay the start depending on what transpires over the next several weeks.
My biggest concern is field availability which is 100% out of our control. I have been in contact with local parks departments regarding fields and each have told me that the decision on the fields won’t happen for several weeks.
I will keep the managers up to date via emails and the leagues as a whole on FaceBook. Hopefully everyone is being safe and we get back to playing baseball soon.
NE Ohio, Joe Sidor-I’ve never seen anything like this. Even though we aren’t in a state-mandated shut down yet by the state of Ohio, restaurants, bars and other businesses that usually attract groups have been forced to close. Schools are closed and unfortunately for us this includes their facilities and ball fields so we can’t utilize their fields as in the past, at least for now. We are lucky in that we play on two other fields that we can fall back on so we do have options.
Our league is set to begin April 27th but everything is on hold and we haven’t set an additional fall back date until we know more. We usually schedule heavier toward the rear of our schedule so we remain hopeful we will still play most of the schedule even if we start late. We have to conclude by the end of August, however, because a lot of our players are teachers or people who need to be finished by Labor Day.
We send almost daily updates to our managers and we hope that within a couple of weeks we’ll be able to decide what to do. Our registration has been open but I closed it because I didn’t want to be refunding money based on an uncertain revised schedule so we’ll just do it over when we know more.
We’re excited because we have 30 teams right now and I’m sure they’ll be anxious to begin playing, whenever that is. Everyone understands that making an alternative schedule right now based on a certain start date doesn’t make much sense.
NE Wisconsin, Joe Viau– These are trying times with the covid-19. Last year our league experienced many cancellations due to rain on 50% of the time on Sundays. However, all 14 games were played. Some of the make up games were played as doubleheaders.
This year our 14 game schedule begins on May 3rd. The managers know that if the season does not start on May 3rd, we will have a shorter season or make up the games. They agreed to proceed with the schedule and deal with the cancellations as the season progresses.
New Mexico, Vince Overfelt-In order for our league to begin our 2020 season we need fields. These are governed by Albuquerque Public schools. We are on hold until they lift the ban on using their facilities. Possibly start date mid to late April. We’re stuck like the rest of the country.
North County (San Diego), Doug Johnson-As we all are adjusting to life during the Coronavirus (Covid-19) Pandemic, we hope all of you and your families are doing okay during these uncertain times. As stated previously, this is a fluid situation that is evolving on a daily basis and its impossible for anyone to predict what the next steps will be. Our focus is on the health and safety of everyone so we can all make it through this current global pandemic.
The North County MSBL would like everyone to know that we are committed and plan to complete the current season once it’s safe and we are cleared to do so. Depending on when we can resume baseball activities, this could mean playing a shorter second season or maybe no second season at all.
Since we are 100% percent dependent on local high schools and city baseball fields to play our games, we have to be patient and understanding until those facilities become available for use again. Unfortunately, MSBL has no control over that decision.
It is extremely important to adhere to the recommended protocol from federal, state and local government officials to curb the spread of this disease, especially these three points:
Do not hold any group gatherings unless absolutely essential.
Anyone exhibiting symptoms (including, but not limited to, cough, shortness of breath, and fever) should self-isolate at home unless they need to seek medical attention.
Adults age 65 and older should stay home.
We will continue to update via email and the website as conditions change. We appreciate your patience and understanding with this unprecedented event. Take care of yourself and your family.
Omaha, Tim Lukowski-Tom and I have met diligently via phone or in his office to discuss the ongoing changes in our ever-changing environment as it to relates to our League, the responsibility we hold to you, your families and our vendors health and well-being. Tom and I both take our jobs, although it’s a labor of love, very seriously. We had a conference call with our National President and Founder Steve Sigler this week and our situation is no different from the multitude of each MSBL League throughout the US.
Your health, your family’s health and well-being is our first priority. This is a situation we will get past with thorough diligence and working closely with our City Administrators. To date we have been in touch weekly with the City of Omaha, City of Council Bluffs, PACE and Metro Umpires. This is a fluid situation where we all are working together as to what is best for the health and safety of everyone involved.
That is the unfortunate news. I wish I had more firm answers for you, but rest assured, it’s a situation we are firmly on top of. I am always available day or night to talk and discuss whatever matters you feel are germane to the health and betterment of our League. This is our 31st year, we have overcome obstacles in the past, and we will overcome this is well.
As of this time we have no concrete answers. But the plan we are moving forward with is a potential early May start. Our plan is to start hopefully the last two weeks in April with slots assigned for teams to practice, and then begin competitive OMSBL league play in early May. There will be weekly to bi-weekly updates as we move forward with each facility and piece that makes up our League.
Puget Sound Senior Baseball League, Thomas Evans Krause-As a PSSBL member or a player who has registered for our 2020 tryouts, I am reaching out to you on behalf of the Board of Directors. We, as you, have been closely following the latest news, dictates and recommendations from health and government officials, and other developments regarding the COVID-19 pandemic.
As you know, we have already suspended all PSSBL activities until the weekend of April 25-26. Following days of discussion, the Board just voted on a plan which would put us on the diamond at the earliest, safe juncture – based on all relevant information from federal, state and local officials.
Our tentative schedule going into the 2020 season:
- Saturday, April 25th – Steve Cox Memorial Park in White Center
- Sunday, May 3rd – Island Crest North on Mercer Island
A league-wide draft is currently set for Saturday, May 9th at Elliott Bay Brewing in Lake City. The 2020 PSSBL regular season will begin after Memorial Day. However, each division would have a slightly shortened regular season schedule compared to our original plan.
Adams, Cascade, Everest, Sierra & Smoky – 20 games
Rocky, Denali – 18 games
Adirondack, Rainier, Teton – 16 games
Playoffs will also be subject to a reduced schedule. At this time we are still accepting registrations and membership dues payments. And of course, this plan is subject to change as conditions dictate. Stay tuned and stay safe.
Redwood Empire (CA), Rick Cantor-I hope you, your family, and your friends are all managing well during our current health crisis of the Covid-19 pandemic. It is certainly an unprecedented situation not seen in our lifetime, with the closure of local events and the cancellation and suspension of professional and amateur sporting events and seasons. At times like these, communication and information are paramount to our well-being and sanity. With that in mind, I wanted to update you all on how this pandemic is affecting our local baseball league of the REBL.
The good news is that there are no current plans to cancel or suspend any of our REBL games, beginning on Sunday, April 19th. However, we must all
understand that we are in uncharted territory and our situation could change at any given moment. In fact, the next few weeks are going to be critically important to the status of our opening day games, as testing for the virus ramps up in our community and a clearer picture ensues in how widespread the virus is locally.
Some situations are out of our control, such as the closure of fields where we play. In fact, the City of Santa Rosa has already closed Doyle Park and A Place to Play park through the end of March. If that closure were to be expanded through April, we would not have those fields available to us. If any high schools fields were to close as well, we may have to cancel games due to a lack of field availability. The REBL Board of Directors will continue to monitor the situation and apply any necessary action related to our league games.
We also must be cognizant of the potential spread of the virus during our
games and practices. It is possible that a fellow teammate may indeed be
infected with the virus and not know it. A stray sneeze or a cough in the
dugout, the sharing of a batting helmet or a bat, the touching of a
baseball all could potentially spread the virus to others at the game. The
single most important consideration we have right now is to stop that spread and limit the number of people affected in our community. It is with this in mind that I would advise league members to suspend any team practices and scrimmages until our county has a better grasp on how widespread the virus is locally. The next few weeks, as testing increases, is critical in that determination and goes a long way in deciding whether or not we can start our season on time. The single most important consideration is the health and safety of our REBL members and their families, and any decision regarding the playing of our games will have that in mind.
While no decision has been made regarding the delay of the start of our
season, I think it’s only fair that with the current uncertainty surrounding
our community over the next few weeks, that the deadline for team fees be
extended to Wednesday, April 1st. If it becomes necessary to cancel any
games that cannot be rescheduled to later in the season, teams will receive
refunds of the appropriate amount. Let’s all hope that doesn’t happen, but
we need to be prepared in case it does.
I will continue to update you all as the Board monitors the situation over
the next few weeks. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to
ask. In the meantime, stay safe, sane, and calm and as a community, we will get through this crazy time together, with or without toilet paper!
(update 3/29/2020)-I hope this communication finds you, your family, and your friends safe, healthy, and adjusting well to our current lifestyle during this COVID-19 crisis. It’s a crazy time right now, and the little joys in our life (like baseball!) help keep our spirits up and our sanity intact. On that note, I have some updates to pass on to our REBL community regarding our Opening Day.
School districts throughout our county have closed all facilities through May 1st, which means that high school baseball fields cannot be used until that date. Therefore, our season opener, scheduled for April 19th, will need to be delayed. The earliest date we could play would be Sunday, May 3rd, but that’s just a few days after the closure date of May 1st, so players and teams will need a bit more time to prepare for game action. The following Sunday, May 10th, is Mother’s Day, which a blackout date for our league. Therefore, our Opening Day is now scheduled for Sunday, May 17th.
By delaying or season from April 19th to May 17th, we lose three Sunday’s of baseball. To adjust to that loss, we will push our season one further weekend later, with our scheduled championship series weekend on Oct.10-11th (with our last regular season games on Sunday, Sept.27th). The other two lost Sundays will be rescheduled as part of doubleheaders, so we will still play our full season schedule with no cancelled games.
Finally, the deadline for your final team fee payment will be pushed back to May 1st.
Stay vigilant with the current Shelter-in-Place orders, maintain social distancing, and practice required hygiene and we’ll slow the spread of the virus in our community. If we’re able to do that, we’ll all be playing baseball sooner rather than later.
Rhode Island, Frank Ribezzo-These are no doubt trying times. First, let me state that your families and teammates are in my thoughts. The question of whether or not we will begin our season on time has come up. As the information on the Coronavirus evolves, so to will our response to it. As of today, we will begin the 2020 season the first week of May.
Managers – please continue to have players pay their league fees as scheduled. We have 6 weeks until the start of the season and fully expect that games will all be played. We will wait until the first week of April to release the schedule and evaluate at that time as to whether we can start the season on time or delay for 2-3 weeks.
I fully anticipate we will be playing a full baseball schedule this year, so please assure your players and let them know they need to pay their fees. If the need to extend the season into late September or early October arises, we are prepared to do that. We have to buy baseballs, pay for insurance and pay field deposits.
In the VERY unlikely event that we need to cancel a part of the season, we will refund players a proportionate share of their fee based on a reduced number of games. But I sincerely doubt that will happen.
Please take this time to connect with your families and follow the suggestions of the medical professionals. We will be on the ball-field very soon!
Rhode Island (Update 4/5)-As you know, Governor Raimondo and Dr. Alexander-Scott recently made several announcements about the State’s response to the COVID-19 crisis. The Governor has issued a stay-at-home order until April 13. Furthermore, all gatherings of more than 5 people are banned.
As of now, these announcements have not changed our timeline in starting our season. We are still planning on beginning our season the first week of May. Realistically, we also know that there is the strong likelihood this plan may need to change. RIMSBL league management will announce any changes to the start date on April 15. Obviously, we cannot begin our season until the state restrictions on gatherings are lifted.
Know that RIMSBL league administrators are planning scenarios where our season begins late. Our ultimate goal is to ensure every team plays the number of regular season games and follows the playoff formats decided on by managers at the league meeting in January. Be well and be healthy…..we will play again!
Sacramento, Alan Van Ness– With California’s “Stay in Place” order please understand if we all abide by this and beat this Covid-19 Virus we will resume our baseball. Our families are the most important concern right now.
Those who are concerned about the status of your Winter/ Spring schedule and plan forward. We will make every attempt to either have a double elimination W/S tournament or adjust the Night League cost, as the majority of you play Summer Night League. Depending on how quickly we can recover as a nation will determine when we can play the game we all love.
Unlike any other league in the country we have to pay and maintain our own complex. This is something we maybe have taken for granted. The same goes with playing baseball. This is equivalent to a natural disaster that the MSBL has no control over. So please take care of yourself and follow the recommendations and I promise SMSBL will provide you all with the best possible baseball in 2020.
San Jose, Mike Zamba– The San Jose MSBL 2020 season remains on hold as all of us “stay at home” in the hope that we all can slow the spread of the Coronavirus that is changing our lives forever.
Family first is the top priority now as we all strive to protect our precious loved ones. I consider each of you as an extended member of my family and my thoughts and prayers are with you on a daily basis hoping that everyone comes through this crisis safely.
When we reach the other side of this pandemic – and we will come through this – our baseball league will be there so everyone can enjoy playing the game we love. Stepping on a baseball field again will certainly be a cherished experience as we all miss many things that just days ago we all took for granted in life.
As for when will our season start…Nobody really knows is the only honest answer. But the league will be ready whenever that time arrives. Insurance and baseballs will be purchased, more than enough fields are available for us to use and umpires are ready to work our games.
In Governor Newsome’s announcement of the “Stay at Home” order he hinted that the school year was likely finished and that the expected time frame to reach the peak of the infection rate was six to eight weeks (mid May???) Until the number of confirmed cases peaks and then begins to decline officials are not going to lift the “stay at home” order. That also means school districts and city administrations will not be issuing field use permits or allowing outside groups to use their facilities until state officials determine that the health threat to the public has ended.
When that day comes and people are allowed to return to work and socialize in groups our league will be able to have a couple Sunday’s of practice, hold new player tryouts, play an exhibition game and start the 2020 season.
Depending on when we can step on baseball fields again – June, July, August or September – we can have our usual summer league or for the first time ever play a “Fall Ball” season. Baseball can be played until Thanksgiving so there is plenty of time left on the 2020 calendar to have a regular season and playoffs.
I will be sending weekly e-mails as we “stay at home” to get your feedback and discuss how we structure the 2020 season (number of games – playoffs – schedule format – fees, etc.) Stay safe until we are allowed to play baseball again.
Savannah, Mike Stubbs-As we continue to monitor the COVID-19 virus and the impact it is having on our community, I wanted to provide a quick update.
As of right now we are postponing all league activities until further notice. With the latest social distancing recommendation of April 30th, we feel that as an organization we must do our part to help flatten the curve of infection.
We will start the baseball season back up when it is morally and ethically the right thing to do. I am in contact with our National MABL/MSBL office and most of the other leagues around the country are following suit.
Please let me know if you have any questions.
So Cal, Jef Brown-As a member of MSBL/MABL of Southern California, I am reaching out to all of you on behalf of our Board of Directors to let you all know that our season remains on hold as we follow the orders of the state officials to “stay at home” to slow the spread of the COVID-19 Coronavirus.
We hope that you and yours are all well and safe during these unprecedented times. You are all part of the MSBL family, and you are in our thoughts and prayers, hoping that we can all come through this crisis safely.
When it is safe and this pandemic has passed, we will be ready to get back to playing the game that we all love! We want you to know that we have discussed contingency plans for starting our season late, and possibly extending it into the fall to ensure that we have a regular season this year. This may include and slightly shortened schedule and playoffs to ensure that we can get the season in, however, we will have to wait until the state officials determine that the health threat to the public has ended and it is safe to play once again.
We are targeting June as a potential start to the season, which is subject to change as conditions dictate. We will adjust the actual start date as we continue to monitor the news and progress regarding the COVID-19 situation.
We want you to know that we are working hard behind the scenes and that baseball, scorebooks, insurance and all the requirements needed to start have been taken care of and we will be ready to go once we get clearance to do so.
At this time, we are still accepting registrations and fees. If you are a returning player or team the deadline to remit fees will be May 15, 2020 to ensure you are eligible and to be included on the schedule. Those who have already paid team fees, will receive the appropriate partial refund/credit due to a shortened season.
We will be sending out regular updates as this situation continues to unfold. In the meantime, we look forward to the time when we can all get back on the field!
Until then, stay safe and stay at home and please feel free to reach out if you have any questions.
President worksheet 4/4/2020
Southern Colorado, Bud Maison-I am contacting you to provide you some assurance. I want you all to know we intend to play ball this season. Currently, we have a start date of 17 May for the most part. This is still the intent but we need to be flexible and adapt to the availability of fields. Right now, the State has cancelled all HS activities until 30 April. So spring sports are done and will not occur. This will provide us with resources to play when the fields become available. IF WE HAVE to delay, we can still get in 8 weeks of play if we start in June. We can adjust the schedule as we need to make up games. In the past, we had opportunities to play on Tues-Fri in the evenings. I am not sure if this will be the same in the future. The intent is to continue with the posted schedule and adjust from there.
I feel that the threat to us right now is unemployment and player interest. I ask you all to check on your team as you can to keep in touch with them and to maintain interest in playing as best as we can. I still have the registration active to provide individuals the opportunity to register and provide all with a list of individuals to support your needs. I know my guys are itching to get out and play.
I hope you and your families all are doing well and I appreciate all you do to make our league successful. If you have any feedback, please provide it as you have time. I have attached information pertaining to the World Series this year.
Southern Maine, Jim Doran-I hope all of you are well. I wanted to send along an update on my thoughts for this season. We, as well as many Leagues across the country are changing their season start times and making changes as this pandemic continues. As I stated in my last letter, the plan was to start both 25+ and 35+ Divisions the week following Mother’s Day. I will start making a schedule with that in mind. However at this point and as things continually change, I feel that we would probably not start the season until June 1st for both Divisions. This seems to be the same as many others throughout the country (please check out emails from League Presidents at https://msblnational.com/msbl-league-startup-update-for-friday-april-3rd/).
That being said, we need to continue to follow guidelines given to us. The stay at home directive until May 1st will definitely affect teams preparing for the season. All fields are closed until at least May 1st. I will maintain contact with field officials as May draws near. The League will not purchase baseballs or League insurance until we have better information on when it will be safe to play. Once the directive is lifted and we can resume activities, we want to give teams the ability to have some type of Spring Training prior to actual games being played.
If we have a June start, we will try to have as much of a full season as possible. We may lose 2 games in the 35+ Division and 3-4 games in the 25+ Division. This can be mitigated by playing more games during the week to make up for lost weekends. I would appreciate any input. Any reduction in games will mean that team fees will be adjusted accordingly. Clair, Adam, and I will work on a fair reduction in team fees. Thanks and stay safe!
Southern Wisconsin, Sean Michael Dargan–During this time of uncertainty and unprecedented events, the MABL of SoWI Board agrees to the following situation management plan to remain in effect until MABL of SoWI resumes normal activities. The plan allows activities critical to the MABL of SoWI organization, mission and upcoming season to take place while focusing on the health and well-being of MABL of SoWI players, umpires, families and volunteers, and responsible actions within our local, state, national and world communities.
(1) Information Monitoring: The Board will monitor relevant information sources and share important updates with each other.
a. Public health advisories from the World Health Organization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services; Public Health Madison and Dane County.
b. Recommendations from MABL National. Actions and cancellations taken by area school districts and youth sports organizations.
(2) Board Decisions: Until MABL of SoWI resumes normal activities, the Board is authorized to make decisions by majority rule as needed and then share the decision with the full membership.
(3) Planning: Due to the fast-changing, fluid situation, the Board will keep contingency plans as simple as possible (focused on key dates and guiding principles as mentioned below), rather than attempting detailed what/if scenario planning.
(4) MABL of SoWI Activities and Gatherings: All non-essential MABL of SoWI gatherings are suspended until further notice and until the MABL of SoWI Board approves and communicates a resumption of activities. All team gatherings, including practices, are non-essential. All communications shall be conducted by emails, phone calls, social media methods, etc. All essential meetings shall use a virtual meeting platform that is compatible with all attendees.
(5) MABL of SoWI Communications: All communications about the coronavirus situation and MABL of SoWI plans related to the coronavirus situation must come from the league President or Division VPs. Similarly, all questions about the coronavirus situation and MABL of SoWI plans should be referred to the league President, who will handle responses after clearing them with the Board as needed.
(6) Game Schedules: The 2020 season schedule is currently on hold, and will be reassessed on 1 May.
(7) Preparations: The Board and staff will continue preparations for a potentially abbreviated 2020 spring/summer season.
(8) Player and Sponsor Refunds: All decisions on full or partial refunds will be deferred until 1 May. This will allow actual impacts to be better understood when making a decision.
(9) MABL of Southern Wisconsin will continue to share news and provide updates to MABL players, umpires, families and volunteers in a timely fashion. We remain excited about the opportunity to play ball as soon as it is safe and responsible to do so. For additional information and guidelines about the coronavirus, please refer to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, Public Health Madison and Dane County.
Syracuse, Rob Allen-I spoke with Steve Sigler from MSBL this morning. They are in Long Island and pushed start of their season back to June 3rd. He recommended the same. We can’t access the fields until the schools are back to session. They are projected to open now 4/15.
I proposed start date of 5/31, the weekend after Memorial Day, while pushing the end of the regular season back two weeks to August 30th. Playoffs would start after Labor Day with play-in game being 9/9. There would be a third Wednesday game played to make for 16 game season. Now we just have to hope things clear up between now and then.
Tri-Valley (CA), Bruce Fraser-There has been a lot going on surrounding the current health situation with the Covid-19 pandemic. It is certainly an unprecedented event within our lifetime with the closure of local gatherings, and the cancellation and suspension of major sporting events. At times like these, communication and information are critical. With that in mind, I wanted to update you on how this pandemic is affecting our league.
First and foremost, the safety and well-being of our league members and their families/friends is our primary concern. In addition, with our new league just starting in its first season, there definitely will be challenges with finalizing the fields that we are in the process of securing. These fields are Livermore HS, Pittsburg Ballpark, and Heritage HS (Sunday only) as the primary ones. We also expect to have a limited number of games at Waterfront Ballpark in Martinez, the San Leandro Ballpark, and Dublin HS. However, the various school districts and city park and recreation departments are currently not issuing permits for the use of their facilities until further notice. As a result of this situation, the Operating-Voting Committee has decided to delay the start of the season from the weekend of April 18th to the weekend of May 2nd. Even with this delay, we expect to be able to complete the season with minimal or no doubleheaders by the end of September.
As all of our teams prepare for the season by holding practices, it is important to take precautions to minimize the potential spread of the virus. It is possible that a fellow teammate may be infected with the virus and not know it. A stray sneeze or a cough in the dugout, the sharing of a batting helmet or a bat, the touching of a baseball…all could potentially spread the virus to others. The single most important consideration we have right now is to stop the spread and limit the number of people affected in our community, so please take the appropriate precautions. As testing for the virus increases over the next few weeks, hopefully the results will help with deciding if further actions are needed with respect to the start of the season.
With the delay in the start of our season, the deadline for team fees has been extended to April 15th. As always, please make sure that you work with your players to pay the team fee on time as it is critical to the success of our league.
I will continue to update you as the Operating-Voting Committee monitors the situation over the next few weeks. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask your commissioner or any Board member. In the meantime, stay safe and healthy.
Tri Valley (Update 3/30)-The Operating-Voting (O-V) Committee wanted to provide you with an update on our upcoming season. We are very much committed to starting the season as soon as the fields are available, and we receive confirmation from the state/local governments, facility providers, and medical community that it is safe to play.
In my last e-mail, I communicated that the season was planned to start on the weekend of May 2nd. Based on recent events, such as the local public schools new earliest target date of opening on May 4th, we are now planning to start the season on the weekend of May 30th. Assuming the schools open as currently planned, starting our season on the weekend of May 30th provides time for the final paperwork to be submitted for the fields and for teams to have an opportunity to practice before we start the season. This timing will also allow us to schedule the full 15-game season with playoffs into the second weekend in October, if needed, right before the first MSBL World Series week is scheduled to start.
As I am sure all of you are aware, the current virus situation we are in is very fluid and plans may need to be changed again. With that in mind, the Committee is working on scenarios for opening the season at a couple of different times, so that we can be as prepared as possible to start our season. This could mean that doubleheaders may be needed or depending on the start date, possibly a shorter season than we are currently planning. To help us with our planning, the Age Division Commissioners will be reaching out to all of you to get your input to help with finalizing the other scenarios. As an example, would you prefer to have more doubleheaders to keep with the 15-game regular season, set the regular season to fewer games, or even play on holidays (Fathers Day, July 4th, Labor Day) that we normally would not.
The feedback that the Commissioners collect will help the Committee make decisions as the detailed schedules are prepared.
We are also extending the due date for full team fees from April 15th to April 30th. A key driver of our league’s costs is dependent on the number of games we play. To the extent that the number of games will be less than what we are currently planning, we will refund or credit the appropriate amount. For those teams that have not paid at least their $2,000 deposit yet, it needs to be paid early this week to remain on the planned schedule. Please discuss any issues you are experiencing on this topic with your Commissioner.
As always, please reach out to your Commissioners or any of the Board/O-V Committee members with questions. I hope all of you are doing well and staying safe!
Tucson, Eddie Sapp– Since our email on Monday, the Mayor of Tucson decided to close bars, restaurants and other places of congregation for the time being. At this time, the City Parks and Recreation have informed us that they will still honor our field arrangements, but we realize that could change any day since our gatherings would easily have more than 50 people in attendance.
The Board has been patient with the process of gathering information and waiting until the time comes that it is necessary to make a decision. The fact that we have not reacted more swiftly should not be viewed negatively. When we made the decision a few days ago, it was at a time that most local schools and daycares had decided to close through the end of March, which is when our season was scheduled to start. There was no reason to rush to judgment at that time.
Nobody receiving this email wants the season to be postponed or canceled, and because of that we adopted a wait and see approach. Just because most other organizations have made decisions to suspend operations, we didn’t feel the need to do the same because we had more time on our side. We strongly believe that a knee-jerk reaction would not have been the proper answer, mainly because it wouldn’t afford our organization the time to properly plan for the alternative scenarios. We adopted our approach because we had the time, and so we could evaluate the various scenarios that could become a reality if we had to suspend or cancel the season. We hope that you can understand and appreciate that, but we also understand if you have different opinions.
Any organization that has to decide in a situation like this is faced with a predicament in which they are going to please some while offending others. In most of those organizations, the people making those decisions get paid to make them, while our organization consists of volunteers who have jobs and families to attend to while trying to keep the MSBL operating smoothly.
In our recent email, we said it was business as usual until you hear otherwise. At this time, we feel it is in the best interests of the league and its members to push back our start date from March 29 to April 19. We will also push back the team registration deadline to the end of business on Monday, April 6. The situation is still fluid, which means these dates may be pushed back as well, and we will keep you posted as things progress, but as of now those are the dates you can plan for. If we can start the season by that date, we will schedule Cactus and Mountain divisions to play two games per week in 3 different weeks, including scheduling games on Monday evenings of holiday weekends.
For the National and American divisions, we would be scheduling 4 doubleheader Sundays, along with 3 weeknight games, for each division. This would allow us to play the full schedule and finish the season in early August as originally planned so we can have a full set of playoffs with a contingency for the weather, which is one of our main goals after the September rain forced us to make changes to last season’s playoffs. If we are unable to start the season by then, we will decide at that time, but it will likely include a truncated schedule and a reduced player fee.
In the last few days, we have worked diligently with our vendors to ensure fixed costs can be reduced if the season is shortened, and we have received an extremely favorable response, which has shifted more of our costs to be variable instead of fixed, and this would afford us to lower player fees even more for a truncated season. If it comes to that we will share the numbers with you at that time.
We realize that some of you may be disappointed with the delay in the start of the season, but at this time we feel it is the right choice for the league as a whole. Unless you hear otherwise, team fees for those teams who have not paid yet are due on April 6, and the season will start on Sunday, April 19 for National and American, Monday, April 20 for Cactus and Thursday, April 23 for Mountain.
We appreciate your patience and understanding as we navigate through this difficult situation.
Twin Cities, Ryan Lutzka-We have been in constant communication with our league managers to date regarding the situation. As of today, the TCMABL plans to move forward as though the season will start on 5/17 (our Opening Day). We will revisit the subject around May 1st to reassess if a May 17 start is feasible. If it is not, we will need to decide on our contingency plan to salvage the season. Our initial thought would be to shave weeks of the schedule. If we are not able to start our season by July 1st, our 2020 season is in jeopardy. If nothing else, we discussed the possibility of a double elimination tournament for our three age divisions that would take place over a 2-3 weekend span in August. Obviously, if “normal life” has not resumed by then, the 2020 season could be cancelled outright. I’d like to give a shout of to our league Executive Officers and League Managers for their willingness to do what is best for our baseball family and their communities during this unusual time. The brotherhood that is the TCMABL will overcome this situation, even if the 2020 season is lost due to a global pandemic.
Vermont, Reid Crosby-The board originally pushed any decisions regarding the upcoming season to 4/1, but given how quickly things have progressed, this weekend we decided to postpone the start of our season from 4/26 to 5/31, the first weekend after Memorial Day weekend. Keeping makeup dates on 7/5 and 9/6, this allows for a balanced 13 game season, with our playoffs starting on schedule. Because our original schedule was unbalanced, Doug is in the process of redoing the schedule so that every team plays every other team once.
I’m sure everyone is disappointed, but this decision makes the most sense given the current state of affairs.
With the start of the season pushed back, we are also pushing back the deadline for dues to be submitted, as we are aware that finances are tight for everyone right now. For those that have already submitted dues, thank you very much. It is much appreciated and having that money in the account is allowing us to get the necessary insurance certificates in a timely manner.
Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. We know and understand that this is a difficult time for everyone. Do everything you can to stay safe, and check on members of your team to make sure they are safe as well. This will pass, and we are confident that we will be able to play baseball this summer.
West Michigan MABL, Mike Hughes– The inaugural season of the West Michigan MSBL is officially ‘on hold’ at this point. Our April 18th practice is cancelled of course, as Gov. Witmer has extended the ‘Stay in Place’ order until May 1st. Our May 30th kickoff doubleheader also looks dubious, as both field admins’ will commit to no dates as of right now. I will advise all whenever I get new information. I was also notified this morning by the umpires association (MHSSA) that all umpire scheduling is also in a ‘holding pattern’, with a major revamping in the cards. However, I have spoken with all three representatives several times, and they also are excited about our first season. They are just overwhelmed with the changes on all levels, both personal and professionally…as we all are. We will regroup in early May, and somehow get outta’ the damn house! We will regain our previous momentum, and then some.
I want to personally thank Steve Sigler, Steve LaMontia, and everyone at HQ. You have kept for me informed and psyched through all this, while keeping my ‘eye on the prize’! I also wanted to give a shout out to four former friends and opponents, as I have seen them in articles here on the website in the last week. That would be former co-worker Ted Poleto of the ‘Inland Angels’, and Tommy Maney, Ralph Caputo, and John Reel (President) of the CDSMBL. I hope to see you all in Phoenix for the World Series this year or next. I want our players here on Lake Michigan to rest assured, we will roll this season out as soon as humanly possible. I can’t think of a better sound then ‘Play Ball’ to snap us awake from this nightmare!
West-Put, Anthony Messina-League Update: Covid 19 Effects on the Season: Updated 03-20-2020
League Managers met by teleconference last evening. We have changed the schedule for the beginning of the season. Assuming success in battle against coronavirus, we agreed to proceed as follows:
- Games scheduled April 5 rescheduled for May 24, Memorial Day off-date cancelled
- Games scheduled for April 19 rescheduled for July 19,
- All-Star Festivities scheduled for July 19 are postponed to a date to be determined as clarity begins to set in on the virus
- Games scheduled for April 26 rescheduled for August 30.
Please keep these dates in your future plans. To ensure a complete season, the league will consider playing into early Fall, even if games must be played at neutral sites to complete schedule. These decisions were made to keep with league’s strong desire to not have regularly scheduled doubleheaders.
For now, be safe, stay healthy and exercise good judgement. We ask that anyone not feeling well should please refrain from playing league games until they feel better and or are tested for the coronavirus.
Please continue to check your email and our website for updates on further League news or announcements.
West Metro Atlanta, Ron Huck– We are not sure when we will start. We do plan to cancel our Fall Baseball League and make up the couple months we miss into the fall season. We are still working on a full season. We have 4 teams sitting out the 2020 season. So, we are going from 16 to 12 team. We are also sending information to our managers weekly and last week did a video call.
Western Mass., Tony Consiglio-With the continued coronavirus pandemic, the WMWBL is delaying the opening of the 2020 season until at least May 16.
Currently, Massachusetts is under a stay-at-home advisory until May 4. If all goes well and we are able to get on the field at that point, a May 16 start date will provide about two weeks for practices and a chance to get organized.
In an effort to reschedule missed games, we likely will play the playoffs throughout September with August becoming the last month of the regular season.
There are many things that still must happen before we can start the season. But, we intend to play baseball at some point. We will monitor the latest developments during April and make any subsequent decisions as necessary.
When we have any further updates, we will contact your managers and post them here.
Thanks, and stay safe.
Willamette Valley (OR), David Winstead-The WVMBL 2020 season plans to start the 1st week of June. This is pending based on the current situation dealing with the Covid-19 virus pandemic. Our goal is to stay positive and prepare as if our league starts on time.
Our new player workout and draft, originally scheduled in April, has been postponed to a date to be determined. New players wanting to join are encouraged to sign up on our website, wvmbl.com.
I would like to thank our Board Members for their ongoing support in preparing for the upcoming season, like they have for past seasons. It is our hope our season continues so the past 30+ champions, Astros and the 40+ champions, Panthers have an opportunity to defend their titles.