Open gyms for Butte’s American Legion Baseball teams have been brought to a halt because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Miners coach Jeff LeProwse said the workouts, which were held three days per week at the old South Central gym since early February, were called off this week.
The move followed the halting of public schools for two weeks in Montana, the postponement of spring high school sports in the state, and the cancellation of NAIA and NCAA spring sports seasons.
LeProwse said there was no edict from American Legion. The Miners and Muckers made the move on their own.
While full team workouts are not set to begin until next month, LeProwse said he is doubtful they will start on time.
“Really, our practices don’t start until April 6,” LeProwse said Thursday. “But that probably won’t happen then.”
Montana and Wyoming are the only states in the country that do not have high school baseball, and Legion ball doesn’t start until after the high school season in most states.
That, LeProwse said, is why nothing has been handed down from the American Legion about the coronavirus and baseball.
The Miners are scheduled to open the season April 26 with a road doubleheader against the Bitterroot Bucks. Butte’s first home action is a May 2 twin bill against the Dillon Cubs.
Butte’s first conference game is not until June 3, when the Miners are scheduled to play host to the Gallatin Valley Outlaws.
“We don’t play a conference game until June, so it hopefully won’t make much of a difference,” LeProwse said of the delay because of the coronavirus.
The Miners and Muckers will not resume working out any time soon.
“I’m not going to practice until they make a decision on school,” LeProwse said.
Earlier this week, Montana Gov. Steve Bullock announced that all K-12 schools in Montana would be shut down through at least March 27.