30 percent capacity possibly ‘a starting point’ for outdoor pro sports, DeWine says

30 percent capacity possibly ‘a starting point’ for outdoor pro sports, DeWine says
CINCINNATI, OH - AUGUST 19: General view as the sun sets after a strike out by Trevor Bauer #27 of the Cincinnati Reds in the fifth inning against the San Diego Padres at Great American Ball Park on August 19, 2019 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) (Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

COLUMBUS — While he didn’t make any official announcements, Gov. Mike DeWine hinted at what the state may consider in terms of attendance during upcoming Major League Baseball, Minor League Baseball and other outdoor pro sports.

DeWine said preliminarily the state thinks 30 percent attendance will be the “starting point” for attendance at upcoming outdoor sport seasons.

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The state is asking for each team to provide a plan that includes social distancing and mandatory mask wearing, he said.

Under the current health order, the state has limited attendance at 15 percent or 1,500 fans, whichever is less. However, some teams like the Cincinnati Bengals and Cleveland Browns had requested and received variances for attendance.

For perspective, Great American Ballpark in Cincinnati can hold up to 42,319 fans and average attendance for the Cincinnati Reds in 2019 was 22,329 or 53 percent of the stadium’s capacity.

Teams that would be impacted by any changes to the attendance limitations include the Dayton Dragons, Cincinnati Reds, Cleveland Indians, FC Cincinnati, and Columbus Crew.

Public Health - Dayton & Montgomery County said Friday the Dayton Dragons have not yet requested a variance for additional fans for its season, which begins in May.

This past weekend the Columbus Blue Jackets announced it has been approved to have 10 percent capacity at its NHL games beginning March 2, which is 1,953 fans.