by Ryan Eakin

CAMBRIDGE - Intercounty Baseball League [IBL] commissioner John Kastner issued the following statement on Thursday updating stakeholders and fans with the league’s Return-to-Play plans for the 2021 season.

"As more and more vaccines are being administered, hope springs eternal that the IBL will be back in some form this summer."

The league hoped to start in June but that does not seem likely. But, with over 100,000 vaccines going into arms every day in Ontario we are confident that Intercounty baseball will be played this summer and we will be able to help communities rebound from over a year of restrictions.

The league has appointed Dr. Tim Rindlisbacher as the league’s Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Rindlisbacher is a Sports Medicine Physician who is currently the Chief Medical Officer of the Ontario Hockey Federation and Consultant to the NHLPA. His new position within the IBL will be to coordinate with the provincial government and member clubs to develop a return-to-play plan for the 2021 season.

As the IBL is a gate driven league, some member clubs require a modest percentage of capacity before they can start the regular season and it is our hope that with vaccinations and the following of health measures, that some clubs will be able to see at least a small percentage of fans at home games.

“Our league has crafted a number of contingencies and scenarios for the 2021 season,” said Kastner. “We currently have plans in place for July 1 and July 15 start dates and in each of those cases, we have modified season lengths and playoff scenarios.”

Everyone who is involved with and enjoys the IBL can help us and their communities. Please, when it is your turn, get vaccinated. And please follow your local public health guidelines on measures including wearing a mask and social distancing.

“To our stakeholders and fans, thank you for sticking with us through these tough times. Thank you to all the health care and frontline workers for all they are doing for us,” added Kastner. “Like everything right now there is a lot that is still up in the air but we have a plan, in fact, several plans, and all of those plans culminate with IBL baseball in 2021!”

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