Cubs, Sox back to playing amid fans’ roars


Chicago Cubs & White Sox back with full capacity Image: Delaware North

The Mayor of Chicago, Lori Lightfoot, announcing that Chicago (US) will join the rest of Illinois in moving to Phase 5 of the Restore Illinois COVID-19 plan comes as music to the ears of Major League Baseball (MLB) teams Chicago Cubs and Chicago White Sox as well as for the fans. The Cubs and Sox dreams of playing to full-capacity crowds once again in their respective residences – Wrigley Field and Guaranteed Rate Field, respectively – are now a reality.

With the COVID-19 situation taking a turn for the better in the United States, life is almost coming back to normal in a nation which was blighted most by the fatal respiratory disease which has wiped out more than half a million of its population.

Under Phase 5 of the Restore Illinois COVID-19 plan, all sectors of the economy reopen with new health and hygiene practices permanently in place. Large gatherings of all sizes can resume. Public health experts’ focus on lessons learned and building out the public health infrastructure needed to meet and overcome future challenges.

The Chicago Cubs are an American professional baseball team based in Chicago, Illinois (US). The Cubs compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as part of the National League Central division. They play home games at Wrigley Field, located on the City’s North Side.

The 41,649-capacity Wrigley Field is a baseball park located on the North Side of Chicago, Illinois (US). It is the home of the Chicago Cubs, one of the City’s two Major League Baseball (MLB) franchises.

The Chicago White Sox are an American professional baseball team based in Chicago (US). They compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the American League Central division. The White Sox are owned by Jerry Reinsdorf, and play their home games at Guaranteed Rate Field, located on the City’s South Side.

The 40,615-capacity Guaranteed Rate Field is a baseball park located on the South Side of Chicago, Illinois (US). The ballpark serves as the home ballpark for Major League Baseball’s (MLB’s) Chicago White Sox. The facility is owned by the State of Illinois through the Illinois Sports Facilities Authority, and is operated by the White Sox.

‘NBC Chicago’ stated that Mayor Lightfoot tweeted recently, “Because you’ve masked up, socially distanced and got vaccinated, we’re now moving to Phase 5 on June 11th in alignment with the State. This means Chicago is scheduled to fully reopen.”

As per the Restore Illinois website, Phase 5 includes the following:

  • All sectors of the economy reopen with businesses, schools, and recreation resuming normal operations with new safety guidance and procedures; and
  • Conventions, festivals and large events can take place.

‘NBC Chicago’ further stated that the above development means both the Cubs and the White Sox will be able to allow 100 percent capacity at baseball games. However this isn’t a guarantee that things will remain completely open going forward. If there’s an uptick in hospital admissions for COVID-19, a mortality rate trend increasing and above 0.1 daily averages, or if ICU bed availability dips below 20 percent, the City and State could move back to a previous phase.

In Region 11, Chicago’s region, positivity rates have gradually decreased down to 1.9 percent as on May 31st. The rolling average of hospital beds in use for COVID-19 patients has decreased as well. As of June 2nd, 308 beds were in use for COVID-19 patients. Meanwhile, the availability of ICU beds has increased, up to 26 percent on June 2nd.

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