The Texas Rangers packed in at least 38,000 fans during Monday night’s home opener against the Toronto Blue Jays.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) removed all COVID-19 restrictions in March, including social distancing, capacity limits, and mask mandates.
The Rangers’ website stated on Monday that masks were required for all fans at the game “except when actively eating or drinking at their ticketed seats.”
What are the details?
Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas, fully opened on Monday night, welcoming nearly 40,000 baseball fans to a night of normalcy.
The MLB game was one of the very first full-capacity sporting events that took place in the state since the COVID-19 pandemic shut most everything down in 2020.
According to CNN, the paid attendance at the Monday game was 38,238 — a “sellout,” according to Rangers spokesperson John Blake. The stadium capacity is 40,518.
Rangers manager Chris Woodward said that the game “resembled some sort of normalcy” amid the pandemic.
“We were excited, man,” he said. “We haven’t played in front of any crowd. We played a little bit in Kansas City, a little bit in spring training, but full capacity, it’s amazing how quickly we get used to certain things and not having that was, ‘Oh, this is what it felt like.'”
Rangers infielder Isiah Kiner-Falefa said that the overall feel of the baseball game was like coming home.
“It felt like it was my debut all over again,” he said. “It was a good feeling to just have the crowd there cheering us on. I think the introduction when I first came out early in the game, that was probably one of the coolest moments of my career to this date.”
During a recent interview with ESPN, President Joe Biden called the decision a “mistake.”
“Well, that’s a decision they made,” he said. “I think it’s a mistake. They should listen to Dr. [Anthony] Fauci, the scientists, and the experts. But I think it’s not responsible.”
Last week, the Texas Department of State Health Services reported that the state saw a seven-day average decrease in the daily number of confirmed COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and coronavirus-related deaths — meaning there has been no apparent coronavirus surge in the state despite Abbott lifting related restrictions.
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