With the coronavirus rearing up its ugly head again, baseball in Europe is hit once more. Both in the Netherlands and in Belgium, the sport is affected
Last night the Dutch government held a press conference in which it announced that ALL sports games will be played without attendance. This will be for a period of at least three weeks. After three weeks, there will be an evaluation to see if the virus has been contained. Of course several other measures have been announced but for us baseball fans, the measure regarding the lack of attendance is the most “important”. This will mean that the remainder of the playoffs, mostly make up games of L&D Amsterdam Pirates, and the Holland Series will be played without fans in the stands.
But the Netherlands was not the only country where the coronavirus has influenced the sport of baseball. Also in Belgium, some news was unveiled.
In a local newspaper, it was announced that the Royal Greys has announced the club will withdraw from the remainder of this year’s Baseball Gold competition, Belgium’s highest level of baseball.
The chairman of the team from Merksem, a suburb of Antwerp, said in a statement that several players had a hard time to follow the corona rules. As a result the club has decided to step back for the sake of the health of the players and others.
According to the chairman, the club will now focus on the development of youth players.
The withdrawal of the Greys has been implemented in the standings already as the name has disappeared from the standings.
The 2020 season is one in which Belgium baseball has been plagued a lot. First of all the season started much later than normal (but of course that was the case in most other European countries). Then the season was halted due to the fact that the coronavirus flared up again. Also the Merchtem Cats had to forfeit a game every weekend, which explains the somewhat messy standings, and now the Royal Greys have withdrawn as well.
According to the article in the local Belgian newspaper, no championship title will be awarded at the end of the season.
Let’s hope the season can be finished without any further problems.