Report: MLB Offers Incentive To Teams For Relaxed Health & Safety Protocols

The 2020 Major League Baseball season was unlike any other in history due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The schedule was reduced to 60 games, fans were not permitted to attend games and players had to follow strict protocols to minimize the risk of spread.

Among the measures that were taken included wearing face masks, quarantining in hotel rooms and a ban on large gatherings in public places. While there were several clubhouse outbreaks over the course of the year, MLB was able to complete the season and crown a World Series champion.

Now as the attention shifts to the 2021 season, players’ health and safety once again remains a top priority. However, the league reportedly is planning to relax some some protocols for players and teams who get vaccinated, ESPN’s Alden Gonzalez:

The new protocols would apply to fully vaccinated Tier 1 individuals or teams where 85% of those Tier 1 individuals are fully vaccinated — a threshold met two weeks after the second dose of Pfizer or Moderna and two weeks after the first dose of Johnson & Johnson, a single-dose vaccine. Individuals who meet that requirement can gather without masks in hotel rooms, carpool together, play cards on airplanes, eat at restaurants, meet outdoors while on the road with anyone of their choosing and stay at personal residences when traveling, among other things.

Those individuals also will not have to wear masks when exercising and don’t have to inform a compliance officer when leaving the team hotel. They will have the option of decreasing testing to twice weekly and will not have to quarantine if they have been in close contact with someone who was diagnosed with COVID-19, as long as they are asymptomatic.

Teams that get 85% of their Tier 1 individuals vaccinated no longer have to wear masks in the dugout and in the bullpen, will no longer have to utilize the Kinexon tracking devices and can restore clubhouse amenities, including pool tables, saunas, steam rooms and video game systems.

MLB is taking a page out of the NBA’s book, who recently announced similar plans to ease protocols for players who receive a vaccination. At present time, there are three vaccine options available. With each passing week, more people are becoming eligible to receive one as distribution ramps up.

MLB’s proposal is for teams that reach 85% vaccination among players, coaches and other clubhouse personnel.

Dodger Stadium policies and protocols for 2021 season

As the Los Angeles Dodgers get set to welcome back fans to Dodger Stadium for the 2021 season, the team recently announced plans for single-game tickets along with policies and procedures to keep in mind.

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