Chicago Mayor Says Cubs and White Sox Have Good Attendance Plans, National Vaccine Timeline Moved Up

Social Navigation

Chicago Mayor Says Cubs and White Sox Have Good Attendance Plans, National Vaccine Timeline Moved Up

Chicago Cubs

As we look ahead to the shape of the 2021 MLB regular season as far as fans are concerned, to date, we could only be reasonably certain that if the pandemic stays on its current course, the Chicago Cubs would have some fans in the stands on or around Opening Day. But now we’ve got a couple more data points to consider that clarify the timeline a bit.

First, the major news announcement at the federal level:

If every adult American will have a vaccine available by the end of May (at least for scheduling your shot), then it’s a very good bet that MLB players and personnel will be able to receive their dose, at the latest, by sometime in May. That will make for a safer – and less interrupted – rest of the season. Very good news for EVERYONE, but since baseball is the beat here, I’ll also say it’s good news for baseball.

Second, a local bit of news from Mayor Lori Lightfoot, per NBC: “We’re in discussions with both [the Cubs and White Sox]. I think they’ve come up with very good plans, and when we are ready, we will announce what the future will look like for other potential spectators in the stands.”

In other words, the Mayor is now saying out loud what we’ve been expecting and hearing privately: there will be fans at Cubs games this year. They aren’t ready to drop the announcement, though, and I wonder if that’s a matter of finalizing the precise shape and capacity. But, yes, you can expect some fans at Wrigley Field on or around April 1.

And if every adult has had the opportunity to receive the vaccine by, say, the end of June, it’s now very plausible that most MLB teams could see capacity limits entirely removed by July. That will depend on the state of the pandemic, but if hospitalizations have shrunk to levels consistent (at worst) with a more typical virus, and if everyone has had a real chance to get the vaccine, you’re gonna see a world where it’s very difficult to keep artificial restrictions in place.

Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.