Due to circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, the Orange County Riptide will suspend operations for the 2020 summer season. The OC Riptide will now focus on resuming operations in advance of the 2021 California Collegiate League (CCL) season.
On Wednesday, June 3, the CCL voted unanimously to suspend operations for the 2020 season. Despite the cancellation of the 2020 CCL season, individual CCL members could explore opportunities to play independently in 2020. The four CCL member teams that sought to play independently included the Orange County Riptide, Healdsburg Prune Packers, Lincoln Potters and Santa Barbara Foresters.
After exhausting all options to field a collegiate summer baseball club while still remaining in compliance with state, county and municipal guidelines, Riptide management believes fielding an independent team in 2020 was not in the best interest for the players, coaches, staff and the overall health of the public in Orange County.
The original intent of the Riptide to play as an independent was to play a schedule starting in early July and ending in early August. Because of COVID-19 precautions and restrictions, the Great Park in Irvine, the OC Riptide’s home field, has not yet been approved to open and operate by July 1. Without knowing if the Irvine Great Park will be available in July, the Riptide chose to cease exploring playing as an independent team in 2020 and has already shifted focus to the 2021 season.
Even if the Riptide could operate under the assumption the Great Park would be available on July 1, acquiring players to play this summer and locating other local teams playing independently proved difficult. Due to the COVID-19 precautions that began in mid-March, acquiring sponsors and funding for the Riptide 2020 season was problematic. Fixed costs of playing independently would result in an increased player fee. Riptide management agrees that the quality of baseball the organization could provide to the players and the fans would not meet the standards the Riptide has become known to deliver.
Enthusiasm for the OC Riptide playing in 2021 remains high and a number of players who were scheduled to play for the Riptide this summer have committed to joining the team in 2021. Make sure to follow the OC Riptide on Twitter for those player announcements soon.
In advance of the Riptide returning to baseball in 2021, the Riptide is seeking interns to join the staff immediately. Internships in Sales & Sponsorship and Marketing are available to college students enrolled in the fall, winter and spring semesters. For more information on internships and to apply, please visit the OC Riptide Internships page.
The OC Riptide is also seeking host families for 2021. With a number of out of the area players already committed to playing for the Riptide in 2021, the Riptide will need housing and host families next summer. For more information or to apply to become a host family, please visit the OC Riptide Host Families page.
Please follow the OC Riptide on all social media platforms for updates and progress towards the summer of 2021.