For most of the past year, as the nation shuttered and struggled to fight the coronavirus, the Texas Rangers, following the lead of Gov. Greg Abbott, adopted more of a devil-may-care attitude toward the pandemic.
As millions stayed home, the Rangers urged their workers to report for duty at Globe Life Field, to the point an employee told ESPN employees were "terrified for their safety."
As Major League Baseball's 30 franchises played games without fans while adhering to local guidelines to stop the spread of COVID-19, Texas and its Rangers flung its doors open to MLB, offering to host three rounds of postseason games as well as 25% occupancy for NLCS and World Series games.
And now, as municipalities and franchises tentatively welcome fans back for the 2021 season, the Lone Star State once again seems intent on displaying a rugged individualism that will set it apart from the rest, even at the risk of imperiling its population.
The Rangers on Wednesday announced they will impose no restrictions on attendance at Globe Life Field, inviting Texans to fill up their second-year ballpark 40,000 strong for their home opener April 5 against Toronto.
The Rangers' announcement comes eight days after Abbott lifted a statewide mask mandate and allowed businesses to operate at full capacity, rescinding "most of the executive orders" he'd issued since the virus began its spread in March 2020.
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