Panama City, FL –
CLEVELAND (WJW) – The Cleveland Indians are now the Guardians.
The team announced the new name on Friday in a video narrated by Tom Hanks highlighting Cleveland’s history. Guardians is a nod to the statues along the city’s Hope Memorial Bridge.
The organization announced in December that it would change its name for the first time since 1915 after years of controversy and recent pressure from Major League Baseball.
Over the past few months, Indians have met with fans and community leaders, resulting in a list of nearly 1,200 potential names.
The club said it had three main themes for a new name: preserving Cleveland’s baseball history, uniting the community and connecting with the city of Cleveland.
Team owner Paul Dolan said social unrest last summer, sparked by the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis, spurred his intention to change his name.
Dolan is expected to provide more details on the pick and the context for the change at a press conference at Progressive Field before the Indians host the Tampa Bay Rays.
In 2018, Indians stopped wearing the controversial Chief Wahoo logo on their shirts and caps. However, the team continues to sell merchandise bearing the smiling red-faced cartoon that has been protested for decades by Native American groups.
The name change sparked a heated debate among sports enthusiasts in the city. Other names, including the Spiders, as the team were once called, have been pushed by supporters on social media platforms.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Cleveland Indians change team name to ‘Guardians’ Source link Cleveland Indians change team name to ‘Guardians’