CLEVELAND -- Friday begins the next chapter for the Major League Baseball franchise that has called Cleveland home for more than a century.
The organization announced on Wednesday afternoon that it will officially make the transition from the Cleveland Indians to the Cleveland Guardians on Friday morning, including changing its name on all social media platforms and releasing new Guardians merchandise.
The Guardians Team Store at Progressive Field will be closed on Thursday to prepare for the changeover and then reopen on Friday from 9 a.m. ET until 7 p.m., featuring new Guardians gear and souvenirs. This location will be the only local store selling Guardians merchandise until product becomes available at other northeast Ohio retailers beginning Nov. 23, although fans will also be able to purchase the new gear at mlbshop.com, starting Friday morning at 9 a.m.
Change often brings a new sense of optimism, especially for a club looking to turn the page on a down season in 2021, and the organization will celebrate its new path forward at the Friday event with free donuts, coffee, raffle prizes and a gift to the first 50 shoppers at the store that morning.
The Guardians will boast the same blue-and-red color scheme as before. The organization wanted the script to be similar to what it has been for the past 75 years, but it decided to make slight changes to mimic the structural architecture of the Hope Memorial Bridge that sports the “Guardians of Traffic” statues, imitating the trusses of the bridge’s underside. On the road, the team will continue to sport “Cleveland” across its chest, while “Guardians” will be printed on the home jerseys.
The team will soon turn its focus toward making the final changes to the ballpark (including replacing the former script “Indians” sign above the left-field scoreboard with a “Guardians” sign) and beginning the $435 million renovation plans to make Progressive Field a better environment for fans to enjoy.