Image credit: https://michaelmcfarlandmusic.com/2016/10/24/cleveland-baseball-time-for-a-new-name-and-logo-cleveland-spiders/
In the final decade of the 19th century, before the advent of what we now call the major leagues in professional baseball, there was a pro team in Cleveland called the Spiders. The time has come for the city to reclaim the name and move forward into the 21st century.
We called on the Kansas City Chiefs to do the right thing after they won the Super Bowl; the issue of the Washington Redskins is a real thing, finally, after years of criticism. Now, the Cleveland baseball organization has its chance to make amends, too.
Cy Young pitched for the Cleveland Spiders; think about that for a moment. Of course, the team also set a record for futility, due to some unethical management decisions, posting a 20-134 record in the 1899 season. Those are some strange highs and strange lows, of course—and perfect for building a new legacy in Cleveland.
In addition to the fun facts above, six men in Cooperstown played for the Spiders, including Jesse Burkett, Buck Ewing, and the aforementioned Denton True Young. Burkett hit a MLB-record 55 inside-the-park home runs in his career, while Ewing was the first catcher even selected for the Hall of Fame.
As for Young, he still holds MLB records for the most career wins (511), most career innings pitched (7,356), most games started (815), and most complete games (749). He also helped the Boston Red Sox win the first World Series in 1903, after the Spiders collapsed following that 1899 season from hell—of which Young was not a part, by the way, having already been transferred to the St. Louis organization.
So why not do the right thing, Cleveland, and bring back the Spiders? There’s a lot of fun history to embrace there, and the team logo/mascot possibilities are downright gold to the marketing and merchandising departments. The team did a good thing a few years ago in eliminating the use of an offensive image from its branding, and now the time has come to finish off the job.
Just remember to give the spider nine legs on the logo, folks; this is baseball, after all.