The following Guidelines have been approved by the St. Joseph County Health Department and should be followed by all participants and spectators of the World Wiffle® Ball Championship.
Since March, the World Wiffle® Ball Championship Committee has continuously monitored COVID-19 to determine the best and safest way to proceed with the tournament. The game of Wiffle® Ball and the layout of Rose Park allows for participants and spectators to be in an outdoor setting where social distancing can be practiced.
Exposure to COVID-19 is an inherent risk in any public location where people are present; and there is no guarantee that you will not be exposed during the World Wiffle® Ball Championship.
The CDC advises that older adults and people of any age with serious underlying medical conditions might be at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19. Participants and spectators should evaluate their own risk in determining whether to attend the tournament.
People who show no symptoms can spread COVID-19 if they are infected, and any interaction with the general public poses an increased risk of being exposed. By attending the World Wiffle® Ball Championship, you acknowledge and agree that you assume these inherent risks associated with attendance.
If, after September 9, 2020, you have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 or have tested positive yourself, you must not attend the tournament unless you have received a subsequent negative test result.
Additionally, anyone experiencing any of the following symptoms are asked not to attend the World Wiffle® Ball Championship:
- Persistent cough
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Fever of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher
- Runny nose or new nasal congestion
- Unexplained muscle or body aches / Headache
- Sore throat
- Gastrointestinal symptoms like nausea, vomiting, diarrhea
- New loss of taste or smell
SPECIFIC TOURNAMENT CHANGES
- Teams will not check-in at a centralized location prior to the tournament. Any roster changes must be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org by 8 AM EST on Saturday, September 19. No roster changes will be accepted once the tournament begins.
- Team bags with shirts, balls, scoresheets, rules pamphlet, hand sanitizer will be waiting at the field where a team plays its first game of the day. If your opponent does not report for their first game of the day, please report this by calling/texting the Commissioners at 219-614-6170.
- Saturday’s pool play format will take place in two sessions (morning / afternoon) in order to limit the amount of participants and spectators at Rose Park at one time.
- The pool play schedule is designed to limit teams’ movement throughout Rose Park. All teams will play their four games consecutively during either the morning or afternoon session.
- The morning session on Saturday will begin at 9 AM EST, with games beginning at 9/10/11/12. The afternoon session on Saturday will begin at 2 PM EST, with games beginning at 2/3/4/5.
- Please do not arrive at Rose Park more than one hour before your first scheduled game. For teams that participate in the morning session on Saturday, we ask that you leave Rose Park shortly following the completion of your final game of the day.
- There will be no Opening Ceremony or National Anthem before the tournament begins. The Player of the Decade will be announced on a live broadcast on oddballsports.tv on Friday evening.
- During pool play, all teams will have two games as the home team, and two games as the away team. Coin flips / “Bat Thing” should not occur during the 2020 WWBC. Each team will receive two scoresheets in their team bags and the home team will be responsible for keeping score.
- There will not be a central “scorers area.” At the completion of games, the captain of the home team will be responsible for taking a picture of the scoresheet and sending it by text message to the group chat with the commissioner and the captains of teams in the same pool. Tournament updates will be sent out via social media for teams to keep track of the standings.
- Sunday’s single-elimination tournament will begin at 9 AM EST. Game times may be staggered depending on the amount of teams that qualify for Sunday. During the Sunday single-elimination tournament, the better-seeded team will be the home team (e.g. in a matchup between the 1-seed and the 4-seed, the 1-seed will be the home team).
- While the postgame handshake is a great sign of sportsmanship, please do not shake hands after games. Learn the Jim and Pam “distance high five.”
- Participants not actively playing, as well as any spectators, must practice social distancing (six feet of space between people) at all times. Wearing a mask is recommended at all times when not actively playing.
- It is recommended that catchers and batters wear a mask during gameplay. Catchers and batters should consciously make efforts to keep six feet of space between them during at-bats. As a result, the unique WWBC rule of allowing runners on third to steal home will be eliminated for 2020 only.
- Tents, or other covered structures, should be properly spaced to adhere to social distancing requirements. Please limit gatherings to team and/or family members.
- Hand sanitizer will be provided to all teams in their team bags.
- If there is a rules dispute during gameplay that cannot be settled through discussion by the captains, one of the captains should contact a commissioner by phone at 312-402-4591 (Mike Baniak), 574-253-1929 (John Premetz) or 219-614-6170 (Nate Hansen). Note: every effort to settle rules disputes should be done through discussion by the captains in order to prevent significant delays.
- For fans that would love to attend but would rather stay home, featured games on Saturday and Sunday (including the Championship Game) will be streamed live on Oddball Sports and WWBC social media sites.