PITTSBURGH, Pa./INDIANAPOLIS, In. (KDKA) — Pittsburgh Pirates’ Triple A affiliate team, the Indianapolis Indians, are reconsidering their team name.
The minor league team tweeted the following statement:
“Indianapolis Indians baseball dates back to 1902 and it’s been the organization’s goal to be low-cost family entertainment for all fans in an inclusive environment. We take this mission very seriously. We also feel strongly about the relationship we have with our fans, community and corporate partners. Knowing that the appropriateness of our team name is being questioned, we will be forming a committee to explore it while also gathering community input. As background, the name is derived from our state, Indiana, which means ‘Land of the Indians’ and our city, Indianapolis, which means ‘City of Indians.’
We are prepared to collaborate with our community and appropriate stakeholders. We understand that our team name has not been endorsed by some but trust they understand the historic and respectful context in which it has been used over the years. We are committed to engage, listen and exchange ideas.”
— Indianapolis Indians (@indyindians) July 28, 2020
Their decision comes as multiple sports teams have decided to either reconsider rebranding or entirely change their team name due to connections to Native American stereotypes. The Washington Football Team is a recent notable example, previously known as the Washington Redskins. The Cleveland Indians say they are in talks with Native American leaders about their team name.