GUIDANCE FOR YOUTH BASEBALL OF NEW ROCHELLE (YBNR) ACTIVITIES DURING THE COVID-19 PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY AS OF FEBRUARY 9, 2021
Pursuant to guidance issued by the New York State Department of Health for sports and recreation during the COVID-19 public health emergency and New Rochelle Parks & Recreation, as well as Directives by the Babe Ruth/Cal Ripken League, the following guidelines are created to provide YBNR players, coaches, parents and spectators with precautions to help protect against the spread of COVID-19. This guidance is updated as of February 9, 2021, and applies to all YBNR-related activities, including any and all play within the league’s recreational and travel divisions regardless of where that play occurs.
MANDATORY FOR PLAYERS & COACHES
• Physical Distancing and Face Coverings:
- A distance of at least six feet must be maintained among individuals at all times unless safety or the core activity (e.g., practicing, playing) requires a shorter distance.
- If a shorter distance is required, individuals must wear acceptable face coverings, unless players are unable to tolerate a face covering for the physical activity (e.g., practicing, playing).
- Players must wear face coverings at all times when not on the field of play.
- Coaches are required to wear a face covering at all times.
- Acceptable face coverings for COVID-19 include but are not limited to cloth-based face coverings and disposable masks that cover both the mouth and nose.
- Coaches should modify layouts so that individuals are at least six feet apart in all directions, to the greatest extent possible, particularly during field exercises, drills, and other practice activities.
- Players are socially distanced while on the bench unless wearing masks. No touching. This applies for all players not in the field during their team’s defensive play and for all players during their team’s turn at bat.
- All players must properly store personal protective equipment, including masks, when necessary.
- Universal NO touch rule: players and coaches must refrain from physical contact with each other or opponents on and off the field of play. A tip of the hat or wave shall replace the customary post-game handshake. Players and coaches should refrain from handshakes, high fives, fist/elbow bumps, chest bumps, group celebrations, etc.
- Equipment Use:
- No participants are permitted to share equipment or personal items (glove, bat, helmet, water bottle, etc).
- Gear should be used by the individual owner only and should be sanitized before and after game play.
- Exception - catcher’s gear may be sanitized during game if shared by players.
- All players and coaches must wash or sanitize their hands between innings.
- All players and coaches must follow appropriate respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette, e.g., cough into your elbow (not your hands).
- Coaches must perform a full wipedown of dugouts and bench area before and after each game.
- Players must provide coaches with a completed Player Health Screening Questionnaire prior to all games and practices. Players will not be permitted to participate otherwise.
- Coaches must conduct daily symptom self-evaluation assessments. Any coaches experiencing symptoms or living with somebody experiencing symptoms must stay home.
- No sharing of food or drinks. Team drink coolers are prohibited. All players must bring their own drinks or snacks.
- No spitting or chewing seeds, gum or other similar products.
SPECIFIC REQUIREMENTS FOR COACHES
- Coaches must ensure all players are adhering to social distancing in and around the dugout as well as other seating areas while not actively participating in the field of play.
- Coaches must ensure that their players, assistant coaches and team parents/spectators are following COVID-19 prevention measures including, but not limited to all guidelines mentioned herein.
SPECIFIC TO PLAY IN YBNR AND GHVBL GAMES
- Each team will supply baseballs to be used exclusively for their team in the field to minimize the number of people using the same ball.
- Coaches must sanitize baseballs with disinfectant between innings.
- Teams keep their own lineup cards and/or use online scorebook (GameChanger), umpires will not receive lineup cards.
- Review, know and follow all other rules and guidance provided by YBNR (and GHVBL for travel play) with regard to safe play during the COVID-19 public health emergency.
MANDATORY FOR PARENTS & SPECTATORS
- Must adhere to 6-foot distancing guidelines for anyone not in the same family.
- No more than 2 spectators per player.
- Must wear appropriate face coverings.
- Must conduct daily symptom self-evaluation assessments. Anybody experiencing symptoms or living with somebody experiencing symptoms must stay home.
- Parents should have backup disinfecting supplies, such as hand sanitizer, in the player’s equipment bag for use when needed
- Must not enter player areas on the field, behind the backstop or in/around team dugouts and player and coach areas.
- According to the CDC, older adults or people with existing medical conditions are at the greatest risk so it is recommended that those people take extra steps to avoid putting themselves in harms way (e.g., avoid large crowds in confined spaces, wash hands regularly, etc).
- Special “COVID-19” release waivers must be completed by parents for all players involved in YBNR program activities.
YBNR HAS A ZERO TOLERANCE POLICY WITH REGARD TO GUIDELINES ADHERENCE
Removal from play and field area: Refusal by a player or coach to comply with the safe play guidelines will result in removal of that player or coach from the field of play and he/she will be asked leave the field area immediately. Refusal by a parent to comply with the safe play guidelines similarly will result in removal of that parent’s child from the field of play. The player and player’s parents also will be asked leave the field area immediately. The same policy applies to any spectators who refuse to comply with the safe play guidelines. YBNR reserves the right to permanently remove a player from a team if necessary to ensure the health and safety of all players, coaches, parents and spectators.
The removal from play and field area policy applies to all YBNR-related activities, including practices and games, and applies to both recreational and travel baseball/softball divisions.