DC sports fans wonder why stadium and arena seats aren’t being filled even with loosened restrictions

Every major league stadium has been letting fans in to start the season, but capacities vary, ranging from just over 1,000 to a bit over 40,000 people.

But D.C sports fans in are wondering, why the city can’t have more than just what the current capacity allows.

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Fox 5’s Ayesha Khan asked this question via an email to Mayor Muriel Bowser’s office on Wednesday. A spokeswoman told her to refer back to the announcement the mayor made on Monday. 

Monday, Bowser said she is not ready to increase capacity above 5,000 fans at Nats Park.

In addition, she said, she will not allow any fans inside the Capital One Arena where the Washington Wizards and the Washington Capitals play. 

Bowser said she will re-examine the pro sports restrictions later this month but that announcement it seems is not sitting well with not only fans but also some Nats players.

"I don’t understand why there weren’t fans in the upper deck and I don’t understand why we can’t have more fans here? said Nats pitcher, Max Scherzer during Tuesday’s post-game.

"Somebody has got to explain that to me because that doesn’t make any sense to me whatsoever."

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"I believe they should open it up some more," said Nats fan, Sean Brennan."

"May be 50 percent just at the lower deck but I think they can increase it a little bit more, because Nats Park is pretty big."

Ayesha did a comparison on how some other teams within the National League East division, have managed and handled letting fans into their stadiums—

For example, with capacity limits for outdoor events currently capped at 20%, the Phillies are allowing 8,800 fans at each of their home game.   

The New York Mets could have up to 8,384 for their April 8 home opener against Miami at Citi Field where attendees will have to provide proof of immunization against COVID-19 or a negative COVID-19 test.

READ MORE: Nationals-Mets opening series postponed due to COVID-19 related issues

The Atlanta Braves, by their second home-stand, will allow 20,500 fans which is 50 percent capacity in a 41,000
seat stadium.

"I think from a physical standpoint, we are way more social distance than we would be at a restaurant or at a bar where we are bumping elbows with other people," said Nats fan, Malcolm Shaw.

"I think with the capacity at the stadium, I we really do feel way more social distance." 

Monumental Sports & Entertainment who represent the Wizards and the Capitals have asked the mayor for a waiver to have fans come into their arena at least at 10 percent capacity but they haven’t heard back yet, as she has offered no definitive timeline on when a decision will be made.

The regular season for both teams, ends in the second week of May.