The Cleveland Indians Have Dropped the Name “Indians”

CHICAGO, IL – JUNE 11: A detail view of the “Chief Wahoo” Cleveland Indians logo . (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)


We live in a different world. Things that we long took as, “acceptable,” are not taken that way anymore. I understand where the name, “Redskin,” would be offensive to some. Others, called it a badge of honor. It is all a matter of perspective.

I can certainly see where the, “Chief Wahoo,” logo would be offensive. I am not sure how I feel about the Indian name. As a white male, I am not sure what I think really matters since it doesn’t pretain to me.

 Earlier this year, the Washington Redskins became “The Washington Football Team” . . . and next year, the Cleveland Indians may become “The Cleveland Baseball Team.”


The New York Times says Cleveland has decided to dump the “Indians” name, which they’ve used for 105 YEARS.


The history of the name is debated . . . although the most common story is that it was a tribute to Louis Sockalexis, a Native American who played for the team when they were called the Cleveland Spiders in the late 1890s.


Sockalexis is considered the first person of Native American ancestry to play in Major League Baseball . . . but there are conflicting reports on that.


Even if the name was originally meant as a tribute, professional sports have been under intense pressure to stop using Native American names and imagery.


And that’s partially because teams and fans have NOT always treated the Indian association with respect and reverence over the years.


The Cleveland organization hasn’t commented, but they’re expected to announce this week that a new team name will be in place by the 2022 season.


It’s expected that they’ll use a TEMPORARY name in 2021 . . . and that could be “The Cleveland Baseball Team,” just like “The Washington Football Team.”  But one “source” says they could play one final year as the “Indians.”

CLEVELAND, OH – JULY 12: The Cleveland Indians team logo. (Photo by Ron Schwane/Getty Images)


The change isn’t a surprise.  Cleveland has been taking steps in this direction over the past decade . . . beginning with phasing out the “Chief Wahoo” logo, which was an Indian caricature.


And this past summer, when Washington dropped the “Redskins” name, Cleveland said they were reviewing the future of THEIR name.


Some fans want the organization to return to the “Spiders,” which they used from 1887 to 1899.  Cleveland was also called the “Naps” between 1903 and 1914.


Other pro sports teams . . . including the Atlanta Braves, the Kansas City Chiefs, and the Chicago Blackhawks . . . have said that they have no plans to change their names . . . for now.


Originally posted on December 14th, 2020