The story of American Legion baseball in South Dakota took another turn on Thursday.
As was previously reported, the National Legion Headquarters shut down all National sponsorship and involvement in American Legion baseball for the 2020 season. There was a section in the letter that the National Legion sent that was open to interpretation as to whether local baseball could be supported or not. With the new information, the South Dakota American Legion Department Executive Committee held an emergency meeting. They approved a sanctioning of a 2020 South Dakota American Legion Baseball Program to be administered by sponsoring Posts, coaches and managers.
The teams will follow the guidelines recommended by the State Athletic Commission, including all local, state and national COVID-19 policies. These teams will have to have insurance, as well as permission from city officials to play.
If these next few guidelines are met, baseball in South Dakota can be played as American Legion Baseball:
South Dakota American Legion Baseball 2020 Form No. 2 must be signed and submitted by the player and parent/guardian. The form is available at https://www.sdlegion.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/SD-player_indeminification-2020.pdf.
The Post and team must obtain insurance, and provide proof of insurance, prior to practicing and playing. Teams will have until June 10 to produce proof of insurance. K and K, who did National insurance, can still be used for local insurance. Teams can use them, or find another company. Copies of proof of insurance must be sent to the South Dakota American Legion Department Headquarters as soon as possible.
Teams must submit a roster to State Headquarters by June 10, which will be forwarded to the National Headquarters Americanism Director.
Rules of play shall be developed and approved. It is recommended that South Dakota American Legion Rules be used for play.
The Department Executive Committee said in a news release that they are extremely happy a solution was developed to play Legion Baseball.
“After all, in that South Dakota is the birthplace of American Legion Baseball, it is only fitting we have a Legion Baseball season for 2020,” the Department Executive Committee said.
The season will get underway in early June in cities in South Dakota where teams have approval to use facilities. It will conclude with four teams at the State Tournament, which will be held at the stadium of the highest seed. A Regional and National Tournament will not be held, as those types of tournaments were canceled earlier this month.