Baseball in 2021

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The NOLL/SOLL board is excited to announce our current plans for baseball in 2021! We want to get the players back on the field safely, while providing a fun experience. Here are current FAQ’s about NOLL/SOLL 2021.

What will baseball look like in 2021?

In order to provide NOLL/SOLL players with a safe and much-needed opportunity for recreation and social interaction, NOLL/SOLL is preparing to offer a Spring Training baseball program in Spring 2021.  

To facilitate this year’s programs, NOLL/SOLL has adopted a phased Return to Play Framework.  The framework allows NOLL/SOLL to develop safety protocols consistent with health department guidance and shift program offerings as new guidance is published.  NOLL/SOLL anticipates the Spring Training program to open in Phase 1 and follow COVID safety practices as published in the NOLL/SOLL Phase 1 Modified Baseball Program, and if conditions allow it to, follow up the Spring Training session with a regular season baseball program for 2021.

How will we make baseball safe?

NOLL/SOLL has incorporated extensive COVID-safety modifications and protocols into its 2021 baseball programs to meet guidelines set forth by the State of California and Alameda County.  Such modifications and protocols include masking, social distancing, hand sanitizing, equipment disinfection, and limiting activities to practice groups of 14 youth and 2 adults.  See the NOLL/SOLL Phase 1 Modified Baseball Program for full details.

Will there be games?

Youth sports training is currently allowed, but youth sports competition is officially closed, both state-wide and in Alameda County.  If state and local authorities permit youth sports competition to resume, NOLL/SOLL will transition from training to open competition as soon as possible, currently this will not be allowed until Alameda county is in the red tier at the earliest.  Until then, NOLL/SOLL will provide baseball training activities for each team independently, as described in the NOLL/SOLL Phase 1 Modified Baseball Program.

How will registration Work?

NOLL/SOLL will open registration for Spring Training on January 15th, we will send out a formal announcement when it opens.   A $50/$75 fee, per player, will be due with the registration ($50 for TBall/Farm/Minors and $75 for Majors/Int/Jrs/Srs.  This will allow NOLL/SOLL to request field space reservations based on participation levels.  As in previous seasons, scholarships will be available for those in financial need.  Our next registration announcement will have more details about how the Spring Training program will be organized.  This program may be limited due to field and coach availability.

Can I get a refund if we don’t play?

Absolutely.  If field closures or COVID restrictions result in cancellation of a Spring 2021 season and/or we cannot hold more than 4 practice sessions for the Spring Training program, registration fees will be eligible for a full refund.  In that case, families who want a refund will need to promptly initiate a refund request online.

What are the current unknowns?

If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that we have less control than we think and that we must focus on the safety of our community.  There are several unknowns in NOLL/SOLL’s ability to mount a 2021 baseball program and season.

  • Fields Availability:  As we know from past experience, Oakland Parks and Rec often delays field opening until March even under normal conditions.  COVID closures have further complicated that situation.  On the other hand, Oakland understands the need for youth recreation, and to that end NOLL/SOLL is working with OPR, Berkeley Parks and other organizations we rent from to obtain fields under our COVID-modified plan.
  • COVID Restrictions:  Though our practice plans are modified to comply with state and county guidance, health departments may issue orders that could affect the start of our 2021 programs or could result in a suspension of play during our programs.