About a year after announcing they would change their nickname, the soon-to-be-former Cleveland Indians unveiled their new branding on Friday. Following the 2021 season, the team will be known as the Cleveland Guardians.
The team made the announcement through a video featuring Tom Hanks and Akron-based rock band The Black Keys. It featured new branding, which for the most part mirrors the fonts and colors Cleveland is currently using. A winged letter ‘G’ stands out as the only truly new addition.
‘Guardians’ is a name that has ties to Cleveland, specifically the Hope Memorial Bridge, which is adjacent to the ballpark. Four iconic statues, known as the ‘Guardians of Traffic‘ are carved into the bridge.
Cleveland’s baseball team is one of a handful of pro sport franchises responding to the call to remove racist names and logos from branding. Three years ago, they stopped using the offensive ‘Chief Wahoo’ caricature, but hadn’t committed to a name change until last year.
This announcement leaves the Washington Football Team as the next major organization expected to make a change. The latest update from the team indicated they won’t be announcing a new nickname until early 2022.