STRUTHERS, Ohio (WKBN) – Since 1915, the Major League Baseball team in Cleveland has been nicknamed the Indians. But those days might be numbered as the club and several key members of the team are leaning toward a name change.
“I think it is time to move forward,” Indians manger Terry Francona said Sunday.
But many Indians fans aren’t singing the same tune.
“They haven’t lived here their whole lives, they don’t know,” said Edward Zupko, of Hubbard. “I think it is ridiculous. Why mess with history? It is bad enough they took Chief Wahoo away, now they want to change the name? I think it is wrong.”
“I do not think they have really discriminated against it or made derogatory things with it,” said Greg Lazor, of Champion. “But with the times changing and everything else, I am looking like they are going to have to change it.”
The question then moves to what to call the team if a change is on the horizon.
Many nicknames are floating around, like the Cleveland Rocks. No, not an actual rock but an ode to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
Or what about the Cleveland Buckeyes? Ohio and the buckeye go hand-in-hand and one team in the state already has the nickname.
Or maybe a blast from the past — the Cleveland Spiders? That was the name of Cleveland’s baseball team in the late 1800s in the old National League.
“[Spiders] doesn’t represent Cleveland, they aren’t insects,” Zupko said.
“Put a survey out where they could say, ‘OK, what would you like to see?’ And go that way,” Lazor said.
No timeline has been given by the team as to when a decision will be made one way or the other but if the name does go, it doesn’t seem like many Indians fans will be on board.
“Things are going too far, too far. Messing with history,” Zupko said.
“I would like to see it stick with it,” Lazor said. “But again, times change.”