GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – To the dismay of many, Major League Baseball is not allowing fans in the stands – just last week, the Brewers original home-opener against Saint Louis was postponed due to positive COVID-19 cases within the Cardinals organization, but local baseball teams are keeping their stadiums open to fans.
During the pandemic, low attendance is actually helping fans of local baseball teams, like the Green Bay Blue Ribbons, enjoy America’s pastime.
Tony Freeman, President of the Green Bay Blue Ribbons says, “Risk management has suggested we put the sign up at the gate that says you’re entering at your own risk like you are anyway; whether you get hit by a baseball or a bat or trip and fall. It is an athletic event.”
Also, rival teams are smaller and located mostly in Wisconsin — with less chance for infection.
Freeman says, “The furthest we have someone coming into Green Bay– maybe Oshkosh, Ripon, or Marinette. So everyone’s pretty local and that helps a lot. Our opponents don’t really have a fan base. They don’t have stands. It’s just a baseball field, so it’s even easier to maintain the distancing.”
There’ve been at least two COVID-19 outbreaks in major league baseball, which has prompted some changes:
- Players and staff must wear face coverings at all times inside a ballpark
- Traveling parties are limited to essential personnel
- Players and staff are not allowed inside bars, lounges, restaurants and malls
“We’re not putting our players in a bubble. We’re not stacking them and telling them to stay in their rooms,” Freemans says.
COVID-19 has ‘hit’ the Blue Ribbons, but players and staff have followed team protocols.
Freemans says, “We actually did have a couple of players early in the season test positive at work. So they self-quarantined, then tested negative, and they were back after 14 days. We’re encouraging every player to communicate any exposure they might have had.”
If you need your baseball fix— the Green Bay Blue Ribbons have a few more home games.