West Metro Senior Softball
Covid 19-Related Game Rules & Procedures
Adopted by WMSSA Board on May 26, 2020
IMPORTANT: WMSSA’s primary concern in dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic is the health and welfare of our league members and their families. We will enforce these safety measures so that we can get back on the field as soon as possible - in the safest way for the league and our families. We will eject any player or guest who refuses to follow these safety rules, for the good of everyone in the park. We appreciate your cooperation in following these new procedures as we work together to maintain the highest health and safety standards.
General Considerations for Social Contact and Safety
- We are revising the West Metro Release of Liability and Assumption of Risk Agreement and all players and spectators will be required to sign it before participating. Part of the form will be agreement to participate under the guidelines below, including any modifications made by the league throughout the season.
- Everyone coming to the park must check in at the pavilion upon arrival, including spectators. We will check the temperature of everybody entering the ballpark using no-contact thermometers. Nobody with a temperature higher than 100 degrees will be allowed in the area.
- Everyone at the ballpark must wear a facemask at all times. We will have a small supply of masks available, but we expect that you will provide your own.
- Hand sanitizer and cleaning products will be provided. Everyone will be expected to assist with pre- and post-game cleanup as needed.
- There will be a “no-contact, no-handshake policy” at every level of the organization until further notice. This includes all physical contact and extends to customary game-related activities and post-game handshakes between members of opposing teams. Instead, without lining up for handshakes, everyone should verbally communicate “good game,” without shaking hands, high-fiving or fist-bumping.
- Players and spectators will be expected to maintain social distancing (6 feet of distance) before, during and after the game, as much as possible.
- There will be no league sanctioned gathering following the games. There will be no picnic lunches. Gatherings post-game will be at each individual’s discretion.
- There will be no beverages (beer, soda or water included) provided. Players should bring their own water. (We are waiting for Eden Prairie’s decision whether or not to turn on the water fountain at the park.)
- Pregame batting practice will be left to player discretion. However, for those choosing to participate, social distancing must be maintained at all times.
- Keep 6 feet of distance from others in and out of dugout areas. Players from the team at-bat will be required to stay separated, with no more than two on the bench and remain on the outside of the fences to maintain space.
- If you choose to bring a chair, please have your name plainly visible on the chair. No sharing of chairs allowed.
- When leaving the dugout at the end of the game, each team will need to clean up the dugout and get rid of trash, especially empty drinking containers.
- Managers, or players they designate, will use a disinfectant in the dugout area (bench, bat racks, etc.) prior to each game.
- There will be no batting helmets provided on a “shared” basis. If you wish to use a batting helmet, please provide your own. We have 8 league-owned batting helmets that we will make available as a season-long loan on a first-come, first-served basis.
- We are discussing what to do about disinfecting league bats and how the batter’s bat is handled. We’ll have a process in place as quickly as we can.
- Catchers, umpires and batters must maintain 6 feet of separation from each other.
- Pitchers will clean the game balls by wiping them down with the provided disinfectant between each half inning.
- We are discussing what to do about gloves, as most medical experts don’t recommend their use.
- To avoid contact and maintain distancing, we will adopt the “Canadian run-through” rule at 2nd and 3rd base as follows:
- Every play at those bases will be a force play, with the runner able to “run through” the base (just like 1st base).
- If the runner chooses to attempt advancing to the next base (in case of overthrow, etc.), he must return to and tag the base before advancing.
- Tagging runners between bases will still be allowed. If the runner does not want to be tagged, he can concede the out by raising his hands.
- Most important: Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
- Cover your mouth and nose – with a tissue, if possible – when coughing or sneezing, then properly discard the tissue in the trash.
- Avoid close contact with anyone else who is coughing or sneezing or who is otherwise sick. People who exhibit COVID-19 symptoms (coughing, sneezing) will be asked to leave the park. If you have family members with these symptoms, please don’t come to the ballpark.
- Make liberal use of the hand-sanitizers available. Bring your own hand-sanitizer if possible.