LAKEWOOD, Ohio — With a new name comes a new logo and that means new merchandise for Cleveland baseball fans.
But, the team has been under the same name for so long, there is a lot of T-shirts, coffee mugs and bobble heads with logo and themes for the soon to-be-former name.
The Friday morning announcement that after the 2021 season the Indians will officially be the Guardians means fans will be able to get newly minted clothes.
And for shops like GV Art and Design in Lakewood, it means another chance to be creative.
The shop, owned by Greg Vlosich, does not have license to use the official name and logos but in his shop, that's okay.
"That one is quite popular today," he said about a two-year-old design that was an instant hit Friday morning. The navy shirt has one of the famous Guardians of Traffic statues as a baseball player standing above two crossed baseball bats. The words "Cleveland baseball" arched across the top and bottom of the picture.
"It's just ramping up again," he said. "It'll be cool to see that one really pick up again."
The Guardians of Traffic are not trademarked under the name change and, right now, can be used for merchandise to promote the team's new identity.
Vlosich said he's been using the statues in designs for 10 years. But on this day, he needed to get more navy T-shirts made as demand for the staple design went up.
"I literally texted the printer 30 minutes after the thing and said, 'whatever you're printing, stop, grab all the navy we have there and let's start printing more,'" he said.
Officially licensed gear won't be sold until the off season, the team said on Friday. So fans will have to wait until October to get their hands on new Guardians gear with the reimagined logos.
But Vlosich can start producing new merchandise now.
The name change was coming. It was something the team promised. But with no time to prepare, there is still merchandise at the store that nods and hints at the soon-to-be former team name.
Vlosich isn't worried about those items selling. He said people in Cleveland have a strong sense of nostalgia.
"You know, people still call it Jacob's Field. There's people who are going to hang on to it," he said. "We'll see if there is even more of a spike now that people are afraid this is their last chance to get it and stuff."
He said his best sellers are seasonal and couldn't say how much the baseball themed merchandise accounted for in the final sales. But, he said, designers are actively coming up with new images and slogans to print.