Chicago White Sox and Chicago Cubs pitchers and catchers will report to spring training in Arizona on Feb. 17, Major League Baseball announced Tuesday, with the first full workout for both teams scheduled for Feb. 22.
Many players already are working out in spring training camps across Florida and Arizona, and Cubs President Jed Hoyer estimated Monday that 20 Cubs players are at the team complex in Mesa, Ariz.
The Cubs and Sox will begin Cactus League play Feb. 27. MLB has invited teams to submit attendance plans for spring training sites, and some have announced plans to open up to fans.
The Cubs will allow fans inside Sloan Park for spring training games, though attendance will be limited to 25% of capacity. The Cubs annually lead the Cactus League in attendance.
The Sox have not yet announced an attendance plan for spring training games.
Some Arizona officials were seeking to delay the start of spring training, but MLB decided to start the season on time after the players union rejected a proposal that included a one-month delay.
MLB’s COVID-19 protocols will preclude media from being allowed inside spring training complexes until the first full workout date, and even then reporters will be limited in where they can go. As in 2020, clubhouses will be off limits to the media.
The traditional spring training photo day also will be closed to the media this year.
Last year’s spring training schedule was cut short when the season abruptly shut down March 12 because of the coronavirus outbreak. A shorter version of spring training, referred to as “summer camp,” took place in July before the 60-game season started.