CLEVELAND — Happy Opening Day, Cleveland!
While the Cleveland Indians' April 5 game against the Kansas City Royals served as their official home opener, it came at a time in which Progressive Field was only permitted to host 30 percent of its capacity. On Friday, the Indians will kick off a three-game series with the Seattle Mariners, which will mark the first time that Progressive Field has been permitted to host a full capacity of fans since the end of the 2019 season.
In order to celebrate the occasion, 3News will be live from Progressive Field at 5 p.m. during "What's New."
The Indians' journey back to hosting a full capacity of fans dates back nearly two years, as fans across the league weren't permitted to attend any games during a 2020 season that was shortened to 60 games due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Progressive Field opened the 2021 season permitted to host 30 percent of its capacity, per Ohio's health orders, before being allowed to increase its attendance to 40 percent in May while still maintaining social distancing measures and mask mandates.
But on June 2, all of Ohio's COVID-19-related health orders expired, opening the door for Progressive Field to return to its full capacity of 35,041 fans. Having spent the past week on the road, Friday night will mark the Indians' first game at Progressive Field since Governor Mike DeWine's orders expired -- and thus, fans in Cleveland's first chance to attend a Major League Baseball game at full capacity since 2019.