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Presenting the Cleveland Guardians

by Clyde E. Dawkins 3 months ago in baseball

Cleveland's MLB franchise will be known as the Guardians starting in 2022

The new logos for the renamed Cleveland Guardians

On July 23, 2021, it was announced that Cleveland's MLB franchise will now be known as the Guardians, with the news being broken on Twitter. The franchise debuted in 1894 as the Grand Rapids Rustlers for their first six seasons, until undergoing three different name changes between 1900 and 1902. In 1903, they became the Cleveland Napoleons (shortened to "Naps"), named after their star player, Napoleon "Nap" Lajoie, but after Lajoie's departure following the 1914 season, the team adopted their long time familiar name: the Cleveland Indians.

As every baseball fan knows, the Indians' track record has not been a good one. They won their first World Series in 1920, but it would be 28 years until they added a second one, with their American League pennant coming after defeating the Boston Red Sox in a tiebreaker. They returned to the World Series in 1954, but the team would go four decades without another pennant. Despite winning 100 games in 1995, the Indians lost the World Series to the Atlanta Braves, and would lose another Series two years later to the Florida Marlins. The Indians returned to the World Series in 2016, but would lose a seven-game series to the Chicago Cubs after having a 3-1 Series lead. Not only did the Cubs end their horrendous 108-year championship drought, but the Indians became the new owners of the longest championship drought in MLB--having not won since 1948. In fact, it is the 2nd-longest drought in sports by only one year; the NFL's Cardinals last won a championship in 1947.

The Indians' name change came after the former Washington Redskins announced that, in the wake of social and racial justice issues due to the killing of George Floyd, they would be dropping their team name. Though, let's be honest: the only reason why Washington's team dropped their name is because they were losing money, that's all. But I digress. They and the aforementioned Indians had been criticized for decades for their team names and logos, which were seen as immensely derogatory to Native Americans. From what I've heard, Cleveland's ownership wasn't as bold in defending the name and logo as Dan Snyder was regarding Washington; in fact, the last few seasons had seen Cleveland slowly shy away from their infamous Chief Wahoo logo and switching to the "block C" logo.

It's not just those two teams. The Atlanta Braves had been a subject of controversy as well, though as of now, their name remains intact. However, they did eliminate the "Tomahawk Chop" after Game Four of their 2019 NLDS series against the St. Louis Cardinals. I actually learned a few years ago that some Cleveland fans believe that the team's backwards Chief Wahoo logo and its insistence on keeping it for so long are the reasons for their championship drought, and as someone who believes in sports curses, I think that may have been the case.

So after 107 seasons, the Cleveland Indians are no more, and it will be the Cleveland Guardians beginning with the 2022 season. I like the new name, I've really loved the social media responses that have mainly referenced Guardians of the Galaxy. I think they did well with this new name; "Guardians" has a baseball feel. It also has a football feel, as "Guardians" was also the name of New York's XFL franchise. I also like the logos, especially since the main one almost resembles the Detroit Red Wings' logo--only with a baseball instead of a wheel.

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Clyde E. Dawkins

Born on March 18, 1985. I am an avid fan of sports and wrestling, and I've been a fan of female villains since the age of eight. Also love movies--especially comedy and horror--and among my favorite TV shows are The Simpsons and Family Guy

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