Winthrop Little League 2020 Season Update

By WLL Board of Directors

The Winthrop Little League Board of Directors has been in regular dialogue since Governor Baker announced his plan to reopen Massachusetts to determine what it means for Winthrop Little League.  This is how we understand Governor Baker’s Plan:

• Phase II (begins June 8) – allows for all athletic fields to open with guidelines and youth sports to open in limited fashion

• Phase III (begins June 29) – allows for youth sports with games and tournaments with limited crowd sizes

• We also know that while the daily COVID #’s reported are encouraging, the Phase roll-out is fluid and as a result, these dates could change.

As it relates to Little League Baseball, there are a number of new safety rules that have been recommended by Little League International including but not limited to the following:

• No handshakes/No high fives

• No chewing gum or seeds

• No spitting

• Each player will be required to have their own helmet, glove, and bat (no sharing of equipment)

• Baseballs will be regularly swapped out every inning

• All players in dugouts will wear masks and separate 6 feet from each other. If too many players are in dug-out (when team is hitting), players will be spread six feet apart behind fence line; players are not required to wear masks on field

• All coaches, umpires and fans are encouraged to wear masks on and off field

• All players must have a parent, guardian or responsible adult present for the entire game

• Parents and families watching games must also sit six feet apart from other families

• All players and families must leave the field within 20 minutes of game ending

• Games will be umpired from behind the pitcher’s mound

As a result of the new safety guidelines, Winthrop Little League Board of Directors has concluded that we cannot consistently implement, enforce and monitor the new safety guidelines for all ages across 5 different divisions.

Therefore, we will only have a 10-12 year-old Little League and 13-16 Senior League this summer (9 year-olds, please see below).

Senior League 13-16 Year Old’s (born between September 1, 2003 and August 31, 2007) – you will have a baseball season.  Your player will automatically be placed on a team within the next few weeks.  Any player 13-16yrs old that does NOT intend to play must send an email to: [email protected] in order to receive a refund and/or credit for next season.  Please include your child’s name and whether you are requesting a “refund” or a “credit”.

Little League 10-12 Year Old’s (born between September 1, 2007 and August 31, 2010)  – you will have a baseball season.  Your player will automatically be placed on a team within the next few weeks.  Any player 10-12yrs old that does NOT intend to play must send an email to: [email protected] in order to receive a refund and/or credit for next season.  Please include your child’s name and whether you are requesting a “refund” or a “credit”.

Little League 9 Year Old’s (born between September 1, 2010 and August 31, 2011) – parent/guardian will be allowed to make the decision as to whether they think player is able to handle the new safety rules as well as skilled enough to play with 10-12 year old’s.  All 9 year old’s that are interested in playing, should email [email protected] as soon as possible to discuss.  Please email [email protected] if you prefer a refund, otherwise you will receive a credit for next season.

Little League 4-8 Year Old’s (born between September 1, 2011 and August 31, 2016) – they will NOT have a Tee Ball / Little League baseball season.  All such families can request a full refund, otherwise a credit will be applied to the 2021 season.  Please email [email protected] for a refund.

We anticipate practices could start mid-to-late June and games starting on or about July 1st. Our goal is to play the season over 6-weeks (10-12 regular season games followed by playoffs with the season concluding in mid-August).  We plan on scheduling all games for weekdays (no Saturday/Sunday games unless there is a rain-out/make-up games).  If your family is planning on taking a vacation and missing a week of the season, we encourage your player to play baseball this summer but it would be helpful to notify the coach in advance for planning purposes.

Our focus has and always will be on the safety of our players, coaches, parents and families of Winthrop Little League which is why we are limiting this year’s season to only the older players.  We will do our best to make up for this crazy season and make next season, and possibly Fall/Winter clinics, the best possible little league experience for all players.

Note – we will be re-opening registration for Little League 10-16 year old’s through June 7 to allow additional players to join.  Please spread the word in the community.

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