It is with deep sadness that the MRLL Board announced that in the interest of your children’s safety, we voted on Sunday night, May 3rd, to officially cancel the 2020 Spring season for Tee and Farm divisions. Then, after hearing more from the heads of the state and district little leagues, on May 6th, the MRLL Board agreed by unanimous written consent to cancel the 2020 Spring season for Minors and Majors divisions.
The board held off on making these decisions for as long as we could in hopes that there would be some way in which MRLL could organize and offer some semblance of a spring season. However we feel that there is too much uncertainty with Little League (both nationally and at the state level), the city of Scottsdale, availability of fields, appropriate safety precautions, weather (heat) conditions, availability of volunteers and families’ willingness to participate. There is also a reasonable expectation that the state/city won't let groups of >10 or >50 gather for another 2-4 weeks after May 15th.
We have just run out of time with too many unknowns at this point. We couldn’t come up with a plan that factored all of these variables and ensured safety and compliance. Instead, we have decided to focus on Fall Ball and getting refunds for Spring back into Parents' hands.
Although MRLL won’t be organizing or sanctioning any games this spring/summer, we obviously hope that if and when the public health restrictions ease, that kids will get together to play baseball on their own this summer and that parents will continue to bond with their children over games of catch.
My son has missed playing baseball. I’ve missed coaching and watching him play baseball. I’m sure many parents are missing the chance to watch their youngster perhaps play don a jersey and hat and play tee ball for the first time. And I can imagine how disappointed our twelve-year old’s are, as they have been looking forward to their final season in Majors with hopes and dreams of glory and memories. But I can take solace in the fact that there will be another season, there will be more games in our future.
As James Earl Jones’ character famously said in the movie, Field of Dreams, “The one constant through all the years, Ray, has been baseball. America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It has been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt and erased again. But baseball has marked the time. This field, this game; it's a part of our past, Ray. It reminds us of all that once was good, and that could be again. Oh…people will come, Ray. People will most definitely come.”
So, the MRLL board looks forward to announcing the details of the Fall 2020 season when little league baseball can return safely and with enthusiasm. We can already announce that Little League has approved the continued use of the Spring 2020 Age chart for the rest of the calendar year, therefore our twelve-year old’s can still play this fall!
We also want to thank our Sponsors again, who’s banners will hang on our fields’ fences this fall and next Spring due to their generous support. And thank you to the families that donated their refundable registration fees to offset the costs of our future fall and spring seasons (email [email protected]). Also, If anyone is interested in joining the MRLL board, we have openings and we’d certainly appreciate the help to prepare for the upcoming seasons.
So look for refunds hitting your credit cards over the next two weeks, and look for announcements about Fall Ball in your inbox as we all look forward to getting out onto the fields again soon!