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Feb, 2021

RDLL Return to Play Plan

Pre-Season Consideration:

  • All RDLL participants pledge to follow WA State COVID-19 guidelines to reduce transmission. These guidelines will be shared and updated as needed with all families. 
  • Team size: goal to keep teams to 11-12 maximum players in order to minimize interactions and contact exposures. T Ball team size: goal limit to 8-10. These are recommendations and not fixed limits.
  • Liability waiver: all participants must have a legal guardian sign the Liability waiver for Covid exposure risks. This waiver will be made available online as part of the registration process, as well as paper copies if needed.
  • Covid commitment Letter:  all participants must have a legal guardian sign a Covid commitment letter outlining their agreement to participate in all required safety measures outlined by the league. This is a starting point for bringing the participants and guardians on board with the culture of safety. There will continue to be frequent reinforcement from the league and coaches throughout the season about safety measures.
  • Baseball, softball and T-Ball are considered moderate risk sports by the State of WA for the transmission of COVID-19.


Symptom Tracking:

  • Athletes, coaches, umpires/referees, spectators are required to stay home if they feel unwell, show any signs of COVID-19, or have had known contact with a confirmed case.
  • All players, umpire and coaches must attest prior to each game and practice the following:
    • In the past 14 days you have not experienced any of the following symptoms:
      • Temperature over 100.4F
      • Unexplained sore throat, cough, shortness of breath
      • Unexplained body aches or pain
      • Unexplained congestion
      • Diarrhea, vomiting or abdominal pain
      • New onset of severe headache
      • New loss of smell and/or taste
    • In the past 14 days, have you or anyone in your household tested positive for COVID-19?
    • In the past 14 days, were you in close or proximate contact (within 6 feet for at least 15 minutes) with anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 or who has had symptoms of COVID-19?
  • If a RDLL participant, coach or umpire cannot attest to the following, they are to consult with the RDLL safety officer prior to returning to any RDLL sponsored activities or events.
  • Coaches will track attendance and symptom attestation of all game and practice participants. 
  • If COVID-19 symptoms or diagnosis occur in a participant within 14 days of an RDLL event, the safety officer must be informed. 

Masks are required:

  • Masks covering the nose and mouth must be worn at all times by anyone present on a little league field including players, coaches and umpires.


  • All participants must provide their own bottle of hand sanitizer (60-95% alcohol content). Additional sanitizer will be provided by the team coach if necessary.
  • All must sanitize their hands at the start and end of practice, on the way on and off the field and if they have contact with a shared object or another person.
  • All should wash hands with soap and warm water for 20 seconds immediately before and after each RDLL event.
  • No Handshakes/Personal Contact Celebrations. Players and coaches should take measures to prevent all but the essential contact necessary to play the game. This should include refraining from handshakes, high fives, fist/elbow bumps, chest bumps, group celebrations, etc. Little League International suggests lining up outside the dugout and tipping caps to the opposing team as a sign of good sportsmanship after a game.
  • Participants will maintain 6 feet of distance when off the field and when feasible on the field.
  • Players and families should vacate the field/facility as soon as is reasonably possible after the conclusion of their game or practice to minimize unnecessary contact, ideally within 15 minutes.
  • Athletes should not share water bottles, uniforms, towels, or snacks and should not spit (saliva, sunflower seeds, etc.).

Drinks and Snacks:

  • Teams should not share any snacks or food or beverages.
  • Athletes, managers/coaches, and umpires should bring their own personal drinks to all team activities. Drinks should be labeled with the person’s name.
  • No post game team snacks in 2021.
  • Individuals should take their own drink containers home each night for cleaning and sanitation or use single-use bottles.
  • Players should bring individual, pre-packaged food, if needed.
  • To drink water or consume snacks, ensure a distance of at least 6-10 feet from other participants.
  • Players should avoid snack consumption if possible. 

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE):

  • All participants must wear a face covering over the mouth and nose at all times. 
  • Players should not wear protective medical gloves on the field during game play.
  • Players are required to wear a face covering while on the field during game play. Choose a face covering that is well-fitting during physical activity.

Dugouts and bleachers

  • Managers/coaches and players will be assigned spots on the bleachers so that they are at least six feet apart and must be placed behind a fence.
  • Dugouts will be used for transit on/off the field.
  • Players are to stay at their assigned spots when on the bench or while waiting their turn to bat.

Player Equipment:

  • No personal player bat bags/equipment bags will be allowed in the dugout. Player equipment should be spaced outside the dugout to prevent direct contact.
  • Players must bring their own league approved individual batter’s helmet, glove and bat. All equipment must be labeled. Helmets must be labeled on the padding not the plastic.
  • Some critical equipment (catcher’s gear) may need to be disinfected between games/practices. When it is necessary all surfaces of each piece of shared equipment must be cleaned first and then disinfected with an EPA-approved disinfectant against COVID-19 and allowed sufficient time to dry before being used by a new player. Increased attention should be paid to detailed cleaning of all equipment directly contacting the head and face (catcher’s mask, helmets).
  • Player’s equipment (e.g. bags, helmets, bats, gloves, etc.) must be cleaned and disinfected after each use by a parent/guardian/caretaker, where applicable.
  • Individuals disinfecting equipment are encouraged to use medical gloves while using disinfectants and follow the manufacturer’s directions for use. All disinfectants should be stored properly, in a safe area, out of reach of children.

Baseballs and Softballs:

  • Each team should use dedicated sets of baseballs and softballs, rotated when the team is fielding. 
  • Umpires should limit their contact with the ball, and catchers should retrieve foul balls and passed balls where possible.
  • Foul balls landing outside the field of play should be retrieved by participating players, coaches, and umpires. No spectators should retrieve the ball.
  • Bat retrieval during game play will be performed by a designated adult, who will sanitize their hands after each retrieval. This individual may choose to wear protective gloves.

Drop off and Pickup

  • All field, practice, and game scheduling will have sufficient time between practices and games to comply with social distancing guidelines.
  • When spectators are not allowed by WA rules, parents should drop off players and pick them up from practice. Only players and manager/coaches will be allowed to attend the practices. It is mandatory that two adults be at all practices, preferably the manager and coach.
  • When allowed by WA rules, parents/families/spectators shall stay in designated spectator areas, not bleachers, and practice 6 feet social distancing rules. Masks must be worn over the nose and mouth.


Best Practices

  • Encourage only those in the same household to travel together, and if not in the same household, travel in separate vehicles if possible. 
  • Coaches will keep a roster of every athlete, staff and volunteer present at each practice, training session, and contest to assist with contact tracing in the event of a possible exposure. 

Modifications of Game Play

  • Non-kid pitch divisions will not have inter-team games until indicated by the RDLL board.
  • No catchers in the non-kid pitch divisions
  • Umpires behind mound and not behind the plate
  • No shared equipment except baseball within a team
  • No indoor RDLL activities will be allowed during Phase 1
  • No spectators will be allowed at the game site during Phase 1, a maximum of 200 participants will be allowed in Phase 2 as defined by WA State.
  • Bleachers are reserved for players and coaches.


Covid Exposure Management

Despite our best safety measures, there will likely be incidents of Covid exposure during the season. These may range from severe primary exposure, such as a child with active Covid that was at a game or practice, to a distant tertiary exposure. We will follow CDC and King County Department of Health guidelines with regards to testing and quarantining measures. These guidelines frequently change and will not be specified in this document at this time. The RDLL safety committee, led by Elena Austin ([email protected]), will consult with RDLL medical and public health volunteers to determine the need for individual or team testing or quarantine measures as situations arise.

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