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LS Youth Baseball – Return To Play COVID-19 Requirements Protocols

 

Updated 8/8/20—Phase 3 changes are underlined.

 

General Guidelines

General guidelines are set forth by the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (Workplace Safety and Reopening Standards for Businesses and Other Entities Providing Outdoor Adult Sports, Supervised Youth Sports Leagues, Summer Sports Camps - Phase II and Phase III Step 1) ("Opening") as well as Little League International Return to Play guidelines.

Ensuring the safety and wellbeing of our players, families and community is a SHARED RESPONSIBILITY between LS Youth Baseball, Volunteer Coaches, Players, Families and broader community. To the extent a matter is not addressed below, Commonwealth of Massachusetts and CDC protocols must be followed.

Please read these in detail and share them with your player.

As we move from Phase III, Step 1 to Phase III, Step 2 additional protocols may be added or removed based upon guidance from the Commonwealth and Town of Sudbury.  We will update the following as appropriate.

Players are prohibited from participating in an LS Youth Baseball activity if they have been in contact with a presumptive COVID-19 positive case until they have self-quarantined for 14 days and show no COVID-19 symptoms as defined by the U.S. CDC.

Legal / Regulatory Requirements

 

  1. LS Youth Baseball will establish a Re-Opening Committee consisting of board members and other members of the community to ensure that these protocols are established in accordance with applicable requirements described above.
  2. These procedures will be provided to the Sudbury Parks and Recreation Department and the Sudbury Park and Recreation Commission, the overseeing Town organization for youth sports.
  3. Obtain signed Town of Sudbury and LS Youth Baseball Waiver (Waivers) from each family at Featherland before the first practice accompanied by a reference of where to obtain these COVID-19 policies and procedures.  If no waiver is signed, no player can play.
  4. Post appropriate signage around all fields as required by Commonwealth of Massachusetts Guidelines.
  5. Establish a formal safety coach for each team that will be the point of contact for the league and families to address any COVID-19 related matters.
  6. All coaches are REQUIRED to attend training on these procedures and specific requirements regarding social distancing and hygiene protocol.
  7. Post these protocols to the LS Youth baseball website to provide transparency to families and the community as to what to expect in a COVID-19 environment.

Social Distancing

  1. Team sizes will be capped at 12 players per team.

 

  1. Maximum of 25 players can be on a single playing surface and no more than 50 people located at each playing surface.  At Featherland a playing surface is designated as Lower Featherland Right, Lower Featherland Center, Lower Featherland Left, Upper Softball and Upper Baseball.   50 people include players, coaches, umpires, volunteers and spectators. 

 

  1. Spectators must spread out along the entirely of the field, including the outfield fence to ensure proper social distancing.  Note that players will be using the typical spectator viewing areas (i.e. Left and Right Field line outside of the fence) as their ‘social distant’ dugout. No spectators can be in front of the players.

 

  1. Game Start Times (when appropriate to play) are staggered by 30 minutes (must not arrive more than 30 minutes prior to game time, unless it is the 1st game of the day.

 

  1. Practice Start Times: Staggered by 20 minutes (must not arrive more than 20 minutes prior to practice, unless it is the first practice of the day.

 

  1. Common Areas Closed: Snack Shack and Restrooms will not open for the season and should not be used. 

 

  1. NO handshaking/celebrations: Players and coaches must refrain from handshakes, high fives, fist/elbow bumps, chest bumps, group celebrations, etc.

 

  1. Spectators/chaperones MUST practice social distancing including wearing face coverings where 6 feet distancing can’t be accomplished. If a player chooses to wear additional personal protective equipment (PPE), they may do so as long as it does not compromise their safety or the safety of other players.

 

  1. Spectators must be limited to ensure social distancing on the sidelines. In order to achieve 50 people or less, it is mandated that only 1 family members, guardians, chaperones or similar persons are allowed in attendance during games.  It is the responsibility of the coach to ensure this is communicated to families and a shared responsibility of the community to ensure compliance.

 

  1. Facemasks are REQUIRED for players when NOT playing in the field, but are strongly recommended when a player is at bat or on base (i.e. during a game but not in the field of play). Players must supply their own facemasks.

 

  1. Player MUST adhere to social distancing, during games only 2 players at a time in the dugout, other players appropriately social distancing outside the dugout, in a safe area, along left field/right field lines in a dedicated area with their personal equipment. During practices LS Youth Baseball will restrict dugouts and encourage players to store equipment along the fence line spaced out 6 feet apart to ensure social distancing.

 

  1. Practice should be focused on social distancing and small groups. 

 

  1. Managers meeting at home plate between umpire and opposing managers must be 6 feet apart.

 

  1. Only parking at Featherland in marked spaces, vehicles parking in grass areas or other unmarked areas WILL BE TOWED.

 

  1. Coaches, umpires and other officials are required to wear facial coverings and maintain social distancing of 6 feet from players, coaches, spectators, and other persons at all times.

Hygiene

  1. All dugouts (Visitor/Home) are provided hand sanitizer.  Players and coaches are encouraged to use between innings.  In addition, hand sanitizer will be available at various stations around Featherland.

 

  1. Families are encouraged to purchase hand sanitizer to provide to the player to be used on an individual basis.

 

  1. No sharing of personal bats, helmets or any other personal items or equipment.  The league will provide a player with a bat or helmet for the season, if requested.    The only exception is catcher’s equipment which will be provided by the league to be used.  Catcher’s equipment will be sanitized prior to next use.  If a player shows up to a field without equipment (including facemasks) they will be unable to play and will be sent home.  There are NO exceptions.

 

  1. Games: All balls are sprayed down/wiped with disinfectant between innings.  Ball hit out of play must be disinfected prior to be putting back into play. Practices: All balls are sprayed down/wiped with disinfectant prior to the next practice.

 

  1. No food, gum, seeds or similar items is allowed to be eaten by players.

 

  1. Players must bring personal, marked, water bottles only.  There is no sharing of water bottles or any other personal items

 

  1. Any player, or other person not feeling well, MUST not attend games or practices.  Coaches are responsible for asking players upon arrival how they feel.  Parents are responsible for checking with your player before leaving home how they are feeling.  If your player does not feel well, regardless if they are symptomatic of COVID-19, they MUST stay at home.

 

  1. Coaches must take inventory for their team, both from a spectator and player perspective who is in attendance at games for contact tracing.

 

  1. No league sponsored/team sponsored carpool to away games

 

  1. Coaches must evaluate players each day for symptoms of COVID-19.  If a coach feels that a player is not feeling well, it will be the parent’s/guardian’s responsibility to immediately pick of that player

 

  1. High touch areas / equipment will be cleaned by coaches after practice/Games (dugout benches, posts, rakes, liner push carts if used, batter box frames if used, tees) using disinfecting wipes

 

Failure to comply with these rules may forfeit a team’s season and potentially jeopardize the entire league being able to participate this summer through the revocation of field permits.  

Any player who fails to comply with any of these requirements as requested by a coach will not be allowed to play.

We as a Lincoln and Sudbury Community have a shared responsibility to ensure that these protocols are met for the safety of our families and community.