Cal Ripken President Mike Watts said although Midget League is still up in the air, there will be a season in Minor and Major in 2020.
As to what extent, Watts said he really won’t know until after the draft-which was held on Sunday, May 31-and the number of signed waivers from parents allowing their kids to play.
But right now, Watts said he’s looking to start the season in late June with approximately five teams in Major and four in Minor.
“We’re continuing to take signups,” Watts said. “They can call me or go through the league’s Facebook page. There will be no tryouts so coaches will do a blind draft, and I will know from the coaches how many weeks of practices they will need before we start. But right now I am looking at 10 players for sure but 11 is an ideal number for each team.”
With an 8-12 game schedule slated (for each team) for the summer season, Watts said games will go until early August and will be played Monday through Friday with no weekend games unless needed due to rain.
Of course something else new this season due to the coronavirus will be temperature checks and a signed waiver by the parent allowing their son/daughter to play.
Watts said the league will not have a corona cop going around making sure families are following social distancing. He said everybody is expected to follow the rules.
Nonetheless, the league will provide sanitary tools as required and needed by everyone, including soaps, wipes and masks.
Watts said he is working on handouts to give to parents for the league’s own set of rules.
But right now, Watts said the guidelines set by the city of Boonville includes the following:
A member of the family will be required to fill out the attached city of Boonville waiver release; all players, coaches and umpires will be required to have their temperature checked upon entering the ballfield and allowed to participate providing they do not have a high temperature; if you decide you do not wish to participate this year, your money paid will be reimbursed to you just as soon as the league has heard back from everyone and can coordinate it all at once. Watts said the league anticipates reimbursing any paid dues by mid June once they have heard back from everyone and can move forward one way or another; the city requirements will be reviewed on an ongoing basis based upon recommendations from the governor and county, and it is hoped and anticipated that they will be relaxed as they continue into their season.
Boonville City Administrator Kate Fjell said gates to the ballparks were opened on June 1.
“We came up with the guidelines by utilizing the draft guidelines from the County (which have now been finalized) and also, looking at Missouri Youth Soccer Association guidelines, as well as state and CDC,” Fjell said.
The city of Boonville is also recommending that players space out as much as possible in the dugout and/or consider alternative dugout arrangements.
Fjell added that game spectators would be parents/guardians only and discourages extended families from attendance.
If possible, she said siblings should stay at home and if families come, they should stay in family groups and should avoid playing on playground equipment.
Other guidelines that should be followed are:
Spectators should maintain safe social distance from each other, a minimum of 6 feet.
If possible, spectators are encouraged to stay in their cars to watch the games.
Spectators should wear a mask and avoid face to face contact to the best of their ability.
Hand sanitizer should be readily available for spectators and players. And do not share food or beverages with others.
As for postseason tournaments, Watts said the Midwest Plains Regional and World Series as they have known from the past don’t exist this summer.
Boonville was scheduled to host the 10-year-old regional tournament this year but due to the pandemic and travel, Watts said they are looking at a sub-regional or regional invitational with just surrounding states like Kansas, Iowa, Missouri and even Arkansas.
Watts said Cal Ripken is still planning on having state tournaments but will be moved back 2-4 weeks from its original date.