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Cleveland Indians, Chief Wahoo, Potential Name Change

 
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forloveofthegame



Joined: 23 Oct 2009
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PostPosted: Mon 1/29/18 2:03 pm    Post subject: Cleveland Indians, Chief Wahoo, Potential Name Change Reply with quote

I know how many people have complained over the years about teams removing their logos (due to "PC" reasons) but I am happy to see this happen. I just wondered why it took so long. The Indians will not use Chief Wahoo after this season. Article from mlb.com
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Mon 1/29/18 7:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes! My eyes nearly popped out when I read that headline.

The logo is a reflection of the era in which it was created, when ugly stereotypes were common. It has no place in the 21st century (and really shouldn't have in the 20th, either).

Just wish we could shut down the whines about being "PC". How about showing some class, instead?

I also like the fact that they named the team after the first native American to play in the major leagues, and have no intention of changing the team name. These are two entirely separate issues.

Here's Bill Shaikin's column about it from the L.A. Times:


"Cleveland Indians to Retire Chief Wahoo Logo"

By BILL SHAIKIN

JAN 29, 2018 | 10:20 AM


Chief Wahoo has struck out.

The Cleveland Indians have agreed to remove the big-toothed, red-faced caricature from their jerseys and caps starting in the 2019 season.

The Indians have used the Chief Wahoo logo since 1947, but Major League Baseball has pressured the team to end its use. The Indians will be allowed to use the logo this year, then remove it from team uniforms in 2019, when Cleveland plays host to the All-Star Game.

Commissioner Rob Manfred, reluctant to mandate a ban on the Chief Wahoo logo, has urged Indians owner Paul Dolan for several years to remove the locally beloved but racially charged logo.

"Paul Dolan made clear that there are fans who have a longstanding attachment to the logo and its place in the history of the team," Manfred said in a statement.

"Nonetheless, the club ultimately agreed with my position that the logo is no longer appropriate for on-field use in Major League Baseball, and I appreciate Mr. Dolan's acknowledgment that removing it from the on-field uniform by the start of the 2019 season is the right course."

Dolan told the Cleveland Plain Dealer: "You can't help but be aware of how many of our fans are connected to Chief Wahoo. We grew up with it. I remember seeing the little cartoon of The Chief in the paper each day, showing if the Indians won or lost."

In recent years, the Indians have emphasized the use of a red block C on their caps.

"While we recognize many of our fans have a longstanding attachment to Chief Wahoo," Dolan said in a statement, "I'm ultimately in agreement with Commissioner Manfred's desire to remove the logo from our uniforms in 2019."

The Indians are not changing their team nickname, despite protests from some Native American groups.

The Cleveland baseball club variously was known as the Forest Citys, Spiders, Blues, Bronchos and Naps from 1869 through 1914. When the club sold Hall of Famer Nap Lajoie to the Philadelphia Athletics in 1915, it changed its name to Indians in honor of Louis Sockalexis, a Penobscot Indian from Maine and the first recognized Native American to play in the major leagues — in 1897, when he batted .338 for Cleveland.

bill.shaikin@latimes.com
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Last edited by dodgerblue6 on Mon 3/5/18 6:35 pm; edited 1 time in total
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sunnyblue



Joined: 22 Nov 2008
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PostPosted: Sat 2/3/18 6:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's a good move. It's past due.
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forloveofthegame



Joined: 23 Oct 2009
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PostPosted: Sun 7/5/20 11:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looking back to a couple of years ago when this was posted it mentions the Cleveland Indians' logo being changed but the team name was not up to be discussed. Now it looks like they are maybe going to consider that, too.

Statement from mlb.com
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forloveofthegame



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PostPosted: Thu 7/9/20 11:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I read a few days ago that the Indians manager Terry Francona thinks it is time for a new name and Francisco Lindor agrees - article from CBS Sports
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Mon 7/13/20 9:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Whatever they feel is appropriate should be accepted. I didn't think the name itself was degrading, but the logo definitely was--it's hard to imagine anyone wouldn't think so.
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Sun 12/13/20 8:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It appears the day of reckoning has arrived, as per this report.
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sunnyblue



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PostPosted: Tue 12/15/20 10:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's the article from Major League Baseball.
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Thu 4/8/21 10:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Indians have banned headdresses and related items at home games.
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Fri 7/23/21 7:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I wanted something different to post about than the Dodgers blowing another lead to the Jints, and here's what I got, just announced this morning!

The Cleveland Indians are changing their team name to the Guardians. That's quite an announcement after over a century under one name, but it's time, and it's going to take a long time to get used to. And that's just for me, someone who doesn't give much thought to their franchise in general. Imagine the adjustment for their employees and fans!
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forloveofthegame



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PostPosted: Sat 7/24/21 1:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was surprised at the replacement name they picked. It sounds kind of "sci fi" to me. But good for them doing this. I know there will be a big uproar and some fans will go ballistic. I still think this is the right thing to do.
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sunnyblue



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PostPosted: Sat 7/24/21 4:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can't wait till next year so I can go to a "Guardian-Angels" game in Anaheim! Laughing
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Sun 7/25/21 8:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, that's the popular line making its way around! Smile

So here's a little primer on team name changes, with my Dodgers, of course, part of the lead description.

But this goes deeper into the name of the Cleveland baseball team, and how it eventually evolved into Guardians.

From the linked article:

Quote:
When the Cleveland club finally acknowledged the problematic nature of the name -- first with the removal of the Chief Wahoo logo in 2018, then with the announcement in December 2020 of the search to find a new name altogether -- it was far too late to make a non-controversial change. The name had been around too long. It meant too much -- both positively and negatively -- to too many people. And those who either didn’t want to acknowledge or simply didn’t agree with the sensitivity of having a sports franchise named after a race of people were never going to be satisfied with the outcome of this process. That’s just the nature of things.

And even for those lifelong Clevelanders on board with ditching the Indians name (hand raised), there was never going to be a new name that everybody agreed with -- especially not on Twitter. (That’s where I regularly took up the losing cause of the Spiders. No matter the result, I am proud to have served.)

Even when you look beyond the enormously complicated matters of race and politics associated with the Indians name, to brand anything as big as a Major League franchise in the year 2021 is convoluted. The legal issues associated with any team-worthy name in the English language were even more profound than the Cleveland Indians – and the NFL’s Washington Football Team -- envisioned. Per its release announcing the Guardians name, the team went through a months-long process that included 140 hours of interviews with fans, community leaders and front office personnel, surveying 40,000 fans, conducting 100-plus hours of teammate brainstorming sessions and generating 1,198 name options, which were narrowed down through 14 rounds of vetting.

What the release doesn’t state is that Guardians was selected weeks ago. Thanks to an existing relationship, Cleveland was able to get the great Tom Hanks to narrate a pump-up video announcing the name, with Black Keys music blaring in the background. Jersey mock-ups were made and logos were carefully crafted. It was a painstaking process.

Yet as recently as Thursday night, there was a small possibility of the whole thing falling apart as the final hurdles were cleared (not unlike a baseball trade that comes down to the wire).

Guardians was announced Friday morning.

So, yeah, things are a little bit different in 2021 than in 1915. But the end result is that Cleveland now has a nickname that it can actually utilize. For a very long time, the sensitivity of the Indians name had outweighed its usefulness in marketing applications. A couple of years ago, the team contracted a local advertising agency to try to design a new logo -- something to replace Wahoo and supplement the (boring, in my opinion) Block C. That process went nowhere. Native American symbols are too meaningful to that population to be cheapened by baseball branding, and crafting a logo strictly related to Cleveland while dancing around the nickname itself was awkward.

So now it’s the Guardians, an homage to the Art Deco figures -- the Guardians of Traffic -- sculpted in sandstone atop the Hope Memorial Bridge. You can see those structures from the western side of Cleveland’s baseball operations offices (and, just as importantly, from the Progressive Field media dining room, where I have observed them while eating many a lukewarm hamburger over the years).

Nearly a century ago, the Guardians of Traffic were imagined as icons for a city that, at the time, was the fifth largest in the nation. Time took its toll on Cleveland and on the Guardians. By the 1970s, the bridge had become so decrepit that there were calls for demolition. But they got cleaned up and fixed up in the 1980s and, because everything old eventually becomes new again, in more recent years they’ve become popular inspiration for artists, T-shirt designers and ad-makers. Cleveland itself has enjoyed a similar revival from the nadir of bankruptcy.

We’ve come a long way, baby, and the Guardians can tell you all about it.

The statues inspired both the name and logo concepts revealed Friday, though they do pose some of their own challenges that prevented a total incorporation of those famous faces into the logos. And no, you won’t find a new mascot named “Guardy the Guardian” patrolling Progressive Field anytime soon. (Slider, a member of the Mascot Hall of Fame, is still gainfully employed.)

But for as complicated as this entire process turned out to be, the name itself is blissfully uncomplicated. It is free of the racial sensitivities of its predecessor and has no psychological attachment to what transpired in the 1954, 1995, 1997 and 2016 World Series. It is a fresh start for the team with the longest championship drought in the sport.

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-Baseball Hall of Fame
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forloveofthegame



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PostPosted: Wed 11/17/21 8:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had not heard this until yesterday, but the Cleveland baseball team was sued by another Cleveland team named the Guardians! - article linked here

It is a roller derby team, and they have settled with an agreement. The name change will be official on Friday - link from mlb.com
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