Texas Rangers open ballpark to full capacity in home-opener against Blue Jay’s

Monday evening the Texas Rangers opened their ballpark to full capacity in their home opener against the Blue Jays. The Rangers are the only MLB team to open their stadium to full capacity so far this season. The game also marks one of the first full capacity sport events since coronavirus shut down all sporting events more than a year ago.

While COVID-19 cases are still on the rise, the Texas Rangers opened Globe Life Field to full capacity for Monday’s home opener. Prior to the game, fans could be see as they packed into the stadium to watch the first game in a year.

The Rangers announced a sellout crowd of 38,238, even though that number is slightly under Globe Life Field’s official capacity limit of 40,518.

“It felt like it was my debut all over again. It was a good feeling to just have the crowd there cheering us on,” said Rangers infielder Isiah Kiner-Falefa. “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.”

Ranger’s manager Chris Woodward said Monday felt like “a real game” and that it “resembled some sort of normalcy.”

“We were excited, man. 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,'” Woodward said.

Despite the stadium having a makes mandate, fans are not required to wear masks if they are eating or drinking. Last month, Texas Governor Greg Abbott ended the mask mandate in Texas and urged business’ to fully open as a result of declining COVID-19 cases and vaccination numbers. Abbott was originally slated to throw out the first pitch before Monday’s game but back out, citing MLB’s decision to move the All-Star Game out of Atlanta as the reason why.

Moving forward, the Rangers will be offering selections that will allow fans to watch with “distanced seating”. The majority of MLB teams are limiting fan attendance to about 25% capacity. The Houston Astros are opening up Minute Maid Park to 50% capacity throughout the month of April.

The Rangers ultimately lost the game 6-2 against the Blue Jays.

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