The Cleveland Indians changed their mascot’s name to “Guardians,” the baseball team announced Friday.
Like other professional franchises, the team faced allegations for years that its name and logo were offensive to Native Americans.
Cleveland follows the Washington football team, which dropped its “Redskins” nickname last year, though it’s a big change for a baseball club called the Indians since 1915.
A video narrated by actor Tom Hanks traced the club’s history in the city before revealing the new name.
“We are loyal, proud and resilient. We protect what we have won and we always defend it, ”says Mr. Hanks of dramatic skyline images and a prominent diamond reel.
The name is a clear nod to the “Guardians of Transportation” – the large art deco statues that tower over the Hope Memorial Bridge that spans the Cuyahoga River between downtown Cleveland and the Ohio City neighborhood.
The new team logos feature the name “Guardians” in sharp red italics with a blue border and an underline of the “s”, similar to the existing uniform, and a large “G” on either side of a winged baseball. that shoot out from the letters.
The online reaction was mixed, with some saying it was a good option that pays homage to its architecture, while others said the ad should have recognized why it’s changing the name.