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Cleveland baseball team to change name after 105 years


The group will stop using its nickname after decades of pressure from Native American groups that describe it as racist. The announcement of the change could be made this week.


Cleveland Indians

of Major League Baseball (MLB, for its acronym in English) in Ohio will change their name after 105 years and will stop using the name


after years of protesting Native American groups for its racist connotations, according to The New York Times. 

The group, which

adopted that name in 1915

, has spent months discussing the possibility of change, which follows the action taken in the summer by the Washington football team, formerly nicknamed the Redskins (Redskins), prompted by the racial protests that broke out throughout the country as a result of several cases of police abuse.

The team could make a formal announcement later this week

, though when it will take effect and what the new name could be is unknown, according to the Times.

The transition involves logistical considerations that affect uniform manufacturers, team advertising and stadium signage.

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For years, activists and Native American groups have protested the use of Indians as a nickname for the Cleveland team, founded in 1901, and the use of images they consider racist.

Last year, the team removed the controversial Chief Wahoo logo from its caps and T-shirts -

a stereotypical caricature of Native American Indians - but the mascot for the ensemble has remained popular and products bearing his image are still sold.

The team has several options on the table for this transition.

One of them is keeping the Indians name and uniforms for the 2021 season while working to make the modification for 2022.

Another option they are considering - similar to how the Washington soccer team proceeded - would be to proceed without a replacement name and then propose a new one in consultation with the public, according to two sources cited by the Times. 

Philip Yenyo, left, executive director of the American Indian Movement for Ohio, speaks with a Cleveland Indians supporter before a baseball game against the Detroit Tigers, in Cleveland, April 10, 2015.AP Photo / Mark Duncan

The organization had to deal with backlash from some angry supporters over Chief Wahoo's removal and will surely come under further pressure with the decision to change his name.

The outgoing president, Donald Trump, was one of the first to refer to the decision through his Twitter account.

"What's going on? This is not good news, not even for Indians," the Republican president tweeted.

In July, the team's co-owner Paul Dolan issued a statement saying the team would review "the best way forward" under the club's name, just hours after the announcement of the Washington football team, which came under pressure to make changes from various sponsors such as Pepsi or Nike and FedEx, which has the rights to name the stadium.

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In the months since, the team has consulted with players, members of the front office, technical staff, community leaders, stakeholders, and Native American groups.

A few days after Dolan's statement, Indians manager Terry Francona said it was time to "move on" with the name change.

"I have reflected before making this statement," announced Francona, a member of the club since 2013. "When asked by our name or by Chief Wahoo, I usually answered that we would never be disrespectful," he said.

An NFL team will change its name: the term is racist and denigrating

July 3, 202000: 35

And I still feel that way.

But I don't think that's a good enough answer today.

I think it's time to move on


It is a very difficult and delicate subject, "he argued.

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Cleveland Indians

were founded in 1900 and began playing as Cleveland Lake Shores.

A year later they adopted the name Blues and then Naps, in reference to one of their historical stars, Napoleon


 Lajoie, in 1902. With the name Cleveland Indians they were proclaimed winners of the World Series twice, in 1920 and 1948.

In the United States, three professional clubs still bear a name related to Native American Indians

: Chicago Blackhawks Hockey Club in the NHL, Atlanta Braves Baseball Club in the MLB, and the Kansas City Chiefs American Football Club in the NFL.

With information from The New York Times and AP.

Source: telemundo

All news articles on 2020-12-14

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