SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KTXL) — The San Francisco Giants had their official 2020 home opener against the San Diego Padres Monday night in a shortened 60-game season.
The game was an opening day unlike any other.
Giants’ mascot Lou Seal was there but the fans were not in the stands. Instead, they were locked out on the other side of Oracle Park’s gates.
Some fans didn’t let the fact that they couldn’t come into the game keep them away.
“It’s been a tradition with my brother and cousins and family, we come down,” said Dan Johnson, from Lincoln. “He’s been coming for 35 years now for opening day. So, figure we’d come down and at least be a part of it if we couldn’t be a part of it.”
And Johnson wasn’t alone as dozens came out to McCovey Cove on boats and in kayaks while a few others hung around the outside of the park. Some fans were packed into the few restaurants that were open with outside seating nearby.
“We went out and ate at Atwater like we do every year for the past three, four years now,” Johnson said.
Inside the park, the atmosphere was also very different. Only players, coaches and staff, as well as about 35 members of the media, were allowed in during the game.
Seats were filled with cardboard cutouts of fans and fake crowd noise was piped in to give players the feel of a normal game.
But Johnson told FOX40 he believes the league was taking all precautions to keep everyone safe.
“I’m optimistic that they’ll get control of it as long as they’re following the right steps and doing everything they should with the contact tracing. I think there’s no reason it shouldn’t, especially with the expanded rosters,” Johnson said.