The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Editorial: History repeats at Rangers’ Stadium

Editorial%3A+History+repeats+at+Rangers%E2%80%99+Stadium

The Texas Rangers have called three different ballparks home since 1972 when they relocated to Arlington, and every move has brought a series of the most unconventional events. 

The Rangers’ first home was Arlington Stadium, which should have been packed with excited fans during opening day in 1972 after the team’s relocation from Washington as North Texas’s official major league baseball team. Instead, the field was empty and over 37,500 seats and bleacher stands went unfilled. The first ever player’s strike in MLB’s 103-year history delayed the team’s much-anticipated debut. 

In 1994, the Rangers moved into The Ballpark in Arlington, a newly-designed stadium built with updated amenities and more seating capacity. The teams made it to opening day that year, but none of the major league teams made it to the World Series. The entire season ended abruptly when a 232-day-long MLB strike began. Before then, the World Series had not been canceled since 1904.

In 2020, Globe Life Field was ready for opening day after two and a half years of construction. A 24-million-pound retractable roof, the largest of its kind in the world, could keep Texas heat and unpredictable weather out and games at a comfortable 73 degrees. 

Not long before the stadium’s debut, the pandemic hit. Spring training was canceled, and it was later announced that no fans would be admitted into games for the shortened and delayed season. A crowd gathered outside of Globe Life Field to watch opening day on big screens and in the bars and restaurants of Texas Live. Other fans peered inside the glass walls of the ballpark, hoping to catch a glimpse of the game. 

When Globe Life Field did open, it opened at about 28% capacity for 11,500 Los Angeles Dodgers and Tampa Bay Rays fans for the 2020 World Series. The last time the Texas Rangers played a regular season game in front of fans was in 2019 during their last game at Globe Life Park against the New York Yankees.

Now, Globe Life Field will be the only major league ballpark to allow full capacity for opening day. On April 5, the park will open to just over 43,000 people in seats and 518 more in standing room.

TCC students who are sports fans may still feel torn between being happy to have in-person sports back and leery of such a large crowd gathering just over a month since Texas opened 100%. 

We’ll see if the long-awaited fan-debut of Globe Life Field in Arlington draws a full crowd, and if the team can rebuild and recover from the most surprising season nobody could have ever predicted. 

This is a big event happening in the sports world and in general where many eyes will be on our community of Tarrant County. It’ll be a new type of normal to have actual fans in the stands, rather than seeing cardboard cutouts and hearing audio of a crowd from past games.

Baseball fans aren’t new to season frenzies, and Rangers fans aren’t new to heartbreak, but who would have thought the past few seasons would be the most unconventional of them all?


Amber Davis/The Collegian

Editoral-Lifting mandates creates new risks
Mask mandates have been lifted and crowds of any size are legally free to gather, social distancing be damned.
https://collegian.tccd.edu/lifting-mandates-creates-new-risks/

 

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