CLEVELAND (AP) – As in countless ninth innings over decades, the fans in the progressive field cheered during the last three outs.
Monday was different. They sang “Let’s Go Indians!”
One last time.
The Indians won their last home game before becoming the Guardians, beating the Kansas City Royals 8-3 to end a run that began in 1915 and continues into the next season with a new look and identity.
Amed Rosario homered and Cal Quantrill (8-3) hit six strong innings to delight a Progressive Field crowd of 13,121 who came to watch their team play for the last time with Indians on their jerseys.
“Not all of us have been here long, but we all respect what the Cleveland Indians have meant to Cleveland forever, and I think we wanted to put people on the right track,” said Quantrill, who is 8 years old. 1 since July 1st.
“We are very happy that they are so reminiscent of the Indians.”
Rosario scored against Jackson Kowar (0-5) and ended with four hits. Bradley Zimmer was able to oust his brother, Kansas City rescuer Kyle Zimmer, in the eighth home game.
Salvador Perez drove for the Royals in two races.
The home final was the club’s last game in Cleveland as the Indians, ending a 106-year run in a city where the name will forever be linked to those of legendary players like Bob Feller, Larry Doby and Jim Thome.
But now the Indians are a memory, just not faded or distant yet.
The team announced the name change earlier this year as part of a nationwide settlement of racist names and symbols. For some, the move was overdue. Others are not ready yet.
When “Take Me Out to The Ballgame” was played during the seventh inning, Cleveland fans shouted “root, root, root for the Indians!” how to send a message.
After the game, the Cleveland players returned to the field to greet the fans.
“I thought it was a nice touch,” said DeMarlo Hale, the acting Indians manager. âYou were outstanding in the ninth inning, the last. Both very nice gestures. “
Cleveland won two World Series (1920 and 1948) as an Indian and was almost anything to win in 1995, 1997 and 2016, only to lose twice in heartbreaking ways. Now the longest current title drought in baseball continues under a new name.
The matinee on Monday was a make-up from a rainfall last week that pushed the Indians farewell to a pre-planned day off.
The customization allowed fans who otherwise would not have attended to hear the story, and there were queues at the ballpark ticket booth – an unusual sight for a team struggling to enter.
Ed Sosinski of Wickliffe, Ohio grabbed a couple of seats on the upper deck, some as a birthday present for his wife Michelle and at the end of a chapter.
“I was here in 1994 for their first exhibition game and thought it would be appropriate to come to the last game as an Indian,” he said. “I had no excuse not to come.”
Once the Indians play their 2021 final in Texas on Sunday, there will be a transition period before the name is officially changed to Guardians, selected from over 1,000 entries submitted during a renaming process.
Cleveland fans were understandably at odds – and divided – over the change, expressing their diverse feelings as they prepared to say goodbye to the only name they know.
It was a mixture of sadness, resentment towards the owner Paul Dolan for the change and the anticipation of a new beginning.
Hale sympathizes with those who may not be ready to see the Indians leave.
“Years and years and years,” said Hale. âI know that accepting change is different in a way. But I really believe it will be adopted over the years. “
The last game of the Indians resulted in a late run on goods.
On Sunday, prices in the team shop were further reduced when fans bought T-shirts and hats – all with Indians on them.
“It’s sort of cleared out,” said Gray Cooper, an English teacher at a Lakewood, Ohio high school. “I have enough Indian products that I probably won’t wear anymore.”
The move to Guardians has begun.
For the game on Monday there were 2022 fixtures with the team’s new logo, which was stacked in the back of the press box.
“It just doesn’t look right,” said a member of a television crew as he passed.
Aside from the team’s name change, it’s been a bumpy season for the Indians on several other fronts.
An injury to reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Shane Bieber played a role in the club falling too far behind to take home the Chicago White Sox, who took their first AL Central title since 2008 in Cleveland last week.
Indian manager Terry Francona had to resign in July due to two surgeries, which clouded his future. And at home games it was a little quieter, as long-time drummer John Adams was not there for health reasons.
Fans posed for photos during Monday’s game, with many using the huge Indian logo above the left scoreboard as a backdrop.
“They’ll still be our Cleveland baseball team,” said Cooper. âI have a lot of memories as a kid and I was hoping that as an Indian they would win another World Series. I hope the guards make it before I die. That would be great.”
RIVALITY BETWEEN SIBLINGS
Bradley Zimmer’s solo shot of Kyle was only the fourth time a brother had shot his brother down since 1900. The others were: Joe Niekro from Phil 1976; Rick Ferrell before Wes 1933; and George Stovall before Jesse in 1904.
Rosario becomes the first Native American player to play six four-hit games since Joe Carter in 1986.
The teams will head to Kansas City for a three-game series starting Tuesday. Cleveland will start Aaron Civale (11-5, 3.90 ERA) while the Royals have yet to announce their starter.
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