BASEBALL ALBERTA'S RESPONSE TO CORNAVIRUS (COVID-19)
Posted March 13, 2020
On Friday afternoon, Baseball Alberta gave their response to the Covid-19 pandemic that has brought the sports world to a stand still in the last couple of days. From the professional leagues to the collegiate level and all the way down to the grass roots associations, almost everything has come to a grinding halt and baseball is no different.
There is no indication from the Powerline Baseball League Executive if this will impact the Spring PBL Meeting scheduled for March 24 in Tofield.
Below is the response in full from Baseball Alberta which takes an immediate effect on baseball in the province:
March 13, 2020
As of Friday, March 13, 2020, Baseball Alberta is suspending all sanctioned activities until April 6, 2020.
A decision on sanctioned activities beyond April 6, 2020 will be communicated by April 3, 2020 at 4:00pm via our website and social media.
Sanctioned activities include evaluation camps for all Teams Alberta including the scheduled evaluation event for the Canada Cup team, all player clinics and camps, all NUCP Umpire Clinics, all NCCP coach clinics, and all Baseball Alberta League meetings.
There have been many media reports in recent days regarding the risk of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and the World Health Organization declaration of a pandemic. Baseball Alberta recognizes the seriousness of this situation and we want to reassure our members that we are committed to the health and safety of all baseball participants. The most current information on COVID-19 can be found on the Alberta Health Services website at https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/topics/Page16997.aspx.
Alberta Health Services provides the following recommendations to prevent the spread of the virus.
To help protect you and your family against all respiratory illnesses, including flu and COVID-19, you should:
- Wash your hands often and well
- Avoid touching your face, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick
- Clean and disinfect surfaces that are frequently touched
- Stay at home and away from others if you are feeling ill
- Contact your primary health provider or Health Link 811 if you have questions or concerns about your health
- When sick, cover your cough and sneezes and then wash your hands
Are other Baseball Alberta members’ activities being suspended?
Baseball Alberta Member Association activities such as player evaluations for team selection for the upcoming season are recommended to be suspended as well. Please contact your local Association for specific details on their events.
Is the 2020 Baseball Alberta league season being cancelled?
Baseball Alberta is not cancelling the 2020 season at this time. The scheduled start of the season in May 2020 is several weeks from today and expected to be able to proceed. However, this is a fluid situation and we will be reevaluating our plans for the upcoming season as more information becomes available.
What is Baseball Alberta recommending to help prevent the spread of COVID-19?
In addition to the Alberta Health Services recommendations noted above, Baseball Alberta recommends the following:
- Members are asked to evaluate any hygiene practices involving shared equipment.
- Recommend that batting helmets are not shared.
- Recommend that catcher’s gear be wiped down with antiseptic wipes after each game or practice or change of user.
- Recommend that players wear personal batting gloves when using team bats that are shared between players.
- Ask players to minimize practices such as licking their fingers and spitting in their gloves as a way to minimize saliva contact with the baseball.
- Ensure players wash their hands after baseball activities. There is nothing that we really can do about reducing direct contact with the most common object that all participants will touch … the ball, but we can ensure that we wash our hands after contact with the ball at tryouts or practices.
What do I do if I am already registered for a Baseball Alberta sanctioned activity?
Please contact the Baseball Alberta office if you are choosing to withdraw from a Baseball Alberta event that you have registered for and we will be happy to provide a full refund. In addition, if we are unable to reschedule an activity, we will be providing full refunds to participants that have already paid. This may include the upcoming Girls Baseball Clinics planned for Calgary and southern Alberta.
Baseball Alberta would again reiterate that this is a very fluid event and subject to changes in approach as new information becomes available. We will be updating our website and social media with information if we have changes to communicate.
Ron Van Keulen
On behalf of the Baseball Alberta Board of Directors