For the first time in the 64-year history of Dixie Youth Baseball, the World Series is being scratched from the lineup due to COVID-19.
Dixie Youth commissioner William Wade, who is based in Montgomery, said the decision was made following a board meeting Monday night and the news was officially released on Tuesday. Dixie Youth is comprised of various leagues in 11 southeastern states for ages 4 through 12.
While there will be no World Series tournaments, there continues to be optimism that regular-season play can be held. Also, each state would have the option of having postseason tournaments if desired.
Dixie Boys Baseball, ages 13-19, is not expected to make a decision known on any of its World Series plans until next week. Like Dixie Youth, Dixie Boys Baseball still plans to have a regular season regardless of any postseason decisions.
Dixie Boys Baseball commissioner Sandy Jones, who is based in Dothan, said he will be contacting the World Series hosts this week before meeting with the Dixie Baseball board to make a decision.
“Our season starts a little later and we do not have as much league play as Dixie Youth does, so we’re kind of open to some alternatives if we’re not able to have a World Series that would offer a little bit more than a normal season,” Jones said.
The following is a statement from Wade sent out to Dixie Youth baseball leagues and officials concerning the cancellation of the World Series: The COVID-19 virus has caused uncertainty and disruption worldwide. Our federal, state and local governments, as well as our healthcare professionals, have worked tirelessly to attempt to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
Over the last seven weeks Dixie Youth Baseball has continued to monitor the latest guidance from our government and the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention. In recent days we have started to see a gradual daily decline in the number of new cases of the COVID-19 virus in some areas. Unfortunately, we are far from out of the woods at this time.
After evaluating all of the information available to us, taking into account the varying nature of communities allowing sports participation and the beginning of the coming school year, the National Board of Directors of Dixie Youth Baseball has decided to cancel all of our 2020 DYB World Series Tournaments.
This was not a decision we made lightly. The #1 priority of Dixie Youth Baseball is to offer regular season play, which offers the greatest opportunity for all of our children to participate. We did not feel that we should sacrifice regular season play in an already altered season for the sake of extended tournament play.
Removing the World Series from our post-season schedule will allow for significant regular season play in those communities that are able to do so this season.
Each state will have the opportunity to offer post-season play should time permit. Laurel, Mississippi was scheduled to host the DYB Division I & II World Series this season. We are proud to announce that all eight of our DYB World Series Tournaments will be in Laurel, Mississippi in 2021.