Source: Evan James

The Texas Rangers will allow a full capacity of fans when the Toronto Blue Jays come to town on April 5, the Rangers’ home opener.

The team is the first in Major League Baseball and in any of the major US sports leagues to announce their plans for a full-capacity crowd since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rangers CEO Neil Leibman said he was “very confident [that] we won’t be a super-spreader event.”

“With all the protocols that we’re following, we’ll be extremely responsible and provide a very comfortable environment for somebody to enjoy the game without worrying we’re going to be a spreader event,” he said.

Masks will be required and there will be no tailgating. After Opening Day the team will plan to offer socially-distanced sections in subsequent games.

The Rangers play at Globe Life Field in Arlington, a suburb of Dallas. Back in October 2020 Globe Life Field hosted some MLB playoff games in addition to the entire World Series. They were permitted under Texas state law to operate at 50 percent capacity, though the MLB ultimately decided on 25 percent capacity.

The other Texas-based MLB team, the Houston Astros, will start the season at limited capacity for fans, though a specific percentage has not yet been determined. They are likely to increase capacity as the season rolls on.

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones also announced his intention to allow fans at 100 percent capacity when the 2021 NFL season begins. The Cowboys play at AT&T Stadium, which is also located in Arlington.