Are Youth Sports Worth It Yet?

Dave Mitchell May 15, 2020 0

Ohio Governor Michael Dewine has done a fantastic job of guiding
the State through this coronavirus problem.

There! I have said it. I did not vote for Dewine as Governor. I
didn’t particularly care for him as a Senator and wasn’t upset when
he lost in his bid for re-election. I questioned his ability to lead
this Great State of Ohio. In this instance, I readily admit I was
wrong.

Dewine was one of the first to shut down a state. He stopped the
virus in it’s tracks. Keeping the amount of people affected and
dying at a minimum. He stood up, took the heat, didn’t complain and
stayed true to his beliefs. But in fact what Dewine did, he
listened. Listened to the experts, the doctors and those he trusts.
He contemplated their advice, then made his decisions.

Yes I am happy with what Dewine has done. Up until now.

DeWine tweeted
on Wednesday, “Low-contact or non-contact sports can resume on
May 26 if they can meet safety protocols. More details on safety
protocols will be posted soon at http://coronavirus.ohio.gov.”
Inclusive in those low-contact or non-contact sports are baseball
and tennis.

A
committee had been put together to discuss the viability of playing
some sort of season. This committee put in place a 20-point plan,
ranging from the viability of players wearing masks to temperature
checks at the gate to social distancing to no players in the dugout
to changing out the baseballs every half inning.

This
is a committee that obviously knows nothing about playing the game of
baseball. Most are parents suffering from delusions of grandeur,
wanting their child to play in hopes they can become a star! This is
simply placing kids in danger.

Several problems come to the forefront in trying to make this
work. First, and most obvious, yet probably the most ignored, is
home plate. Batter, catcher and umpire are all within 6 feet of each
other if they are following the standards of positioning. The
catcher has to be close to the batter, and the umpire needs to be
close to the catcher to see the pitches correctly. All in close
proximity of each other.

Secondly, MLB is finding one of their biggest problems, besides
money, is distancing. They are talking about playing in front of
crowd-less stadiums. Yet there is no talk of that at little league
or traveling team games. That’s because you cannot guarantee social
distancing in most areas. Fans will sit in the stands, if there are
any. Kids will sit in dug outs. Players will touch each other after
big hits, hug each other after big wins. It’s unavoidable.

Sure masks will be worn. This will help, no doubt. However as a
person who has worn glasses for years and new to the “mask wearing”
population, one hazard is your glasses fog up if the mask isn’t worn
properly. And masks will fall, move, become dislodged. What if that
happens while in the batters box? The glasses become fogged up as
the batter breathes when the pitch is on the way?

Finally,
cases
of a mysterious, coronavirus-linked syndrome seen in children have
spiked in New York City overnight, bringing the total to 100 children
in the five boroughs who have been identified with the illness that
has already killed
three children statewide
,
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said Thursday.
We don’t know enough about this yet. One thing we don’t need is a
spike in children’s illnesses just because we want them to play 10-12
games in a month.

Getting back to Dewine, he is one of the top Governors in the
country right now. That’s because of how he has handled this
situation. It would be a shame for all the good work he has done, to
all go away simply to placate a few that want to get in a few games
for their kids in the summer months. Cancel everything right now and
focus on the fall. That gives us a chance.

David
Mitchell is the co-host of the Ohio Baseball Weekly show, resuming
April 13 at 7. He also has been providing radio play by play for over
25 years of high school and collegiate sports. You can follow or
message him on twitter at ohbbcohost

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