"We could have a pretty good chance of experiencing a baseball season that's a full season," Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert, according to ESPN's Baseball Tonight Podcast. "We could have people from the stands, not right next to each other; there are going to be public health restrictions like mask wearing and matters like that."
Fauci cautioned that fan attendance would be determined by current trends holding and the complete impact of certain coronavirus variations remains to be seen.
Spring training is anticipated to begin with restricted fans during Florida and Arizona, pending local approval, together with teams like the Boston Red Sox, Houston Astros and Washington Nationals having tickets on sale now.
Fan presence for the entire year is determined by local municipalities, but clubs are required to submit a plan to the team office that has to be accepted as consistent with the help of their health experts. The Tampa Bay Rays are just one group which has announced a specific plan -- in their case, 7,000 fans permitted at Tropicana Field -- to the start of the year in April.
Fauci is unclear when MLB will see the return of full stadiums, stating it would probably take 75-80percent of the populace being vaccinated using the rate of infection staying very low.