It’s not often that the fiscal woes of a municipality become the fodder for fan heckling at a baseball game, but Cleveland Indians fans took it there with a chant of “Detroit’s bankrupt!” in the ninth inning of an Indians-Tigers game. Cleveland, which has done little to arouse the national sports fans interest in the last decade other than enduring an extremely public breakup (see James, LeBron), seems happy enough to have someone else to pick on for once.
The “Detroit’s bankrupt” chant was in response to some Tigers fans who had started a “Let’s go Tigers” chant in the ninth inning of a tie game in Cleveland. Indians fans booed, and then came up with their retort moments later.
The Indians, within dreaming distance of the playoffs for the first time in years, are unlikely to catch the Tigers, but can console themselves with the thought that their city is able to pay its bills.
If Detroit fans are looking for a good reply, in case the “Detroit’s bankrupt” chant becomes a regular feature of Indians-Tigers games, I have a suggestion: “your logo is racist!” The Indians perpetuate the most visibly backward thing about baseball (football is also guilty here): using a marginalized racial group as their symbol. The grinning Indian stereotype (Chief Wahoo, he’s called) for their logo exacerbates the matter. While it’s better to live in a financially solvent city with a baseball team that has a racist logo than a bankrupt city, Cleveland Indians fans could actually pressure their organization to get rid of the name Indians.
Or, if Detroit fans don’t want to go there, they could just say, “our team is better,” and they’d be right.