Ohio legislator wants Cleveland Indians name, mascot change

By MARC KOVAC @ohiocapitalblog mkovac@dixcom.com Published:

CLEVELAND -- The Indians plan an extensive renovation of Progressive Field over the next two years, remodeling the 20-year-old downtown ballpark to better connect with their fans.

The club intends to make interior and exterior modifications to the area stretching from center to right field. The changes will require a modest reduction in seats, which the team will offset by the addition of social areas to accommodate fans, said the person who spoke on condition of anonymity because the team has not made its designs public.

The Indians are expected to announce details on the upgrades at the 43,000-seat ballpark later this week.

Known as Jacobs Field when it opened in 1994 to replace crumbling Municipal Stadium, the 43,000-seat home of Cleveland's major league baseball team has undergone numerous alterations over the past two decades.

• Basketball

Wilson injured: Michigan coach John Beilein says freshman forward D.J. Wilson will miss four to six weeks after surgery on his right pinky.

Beilein says he anticipates a speedy recovery, and Wilson is expected back at 100 percent by September.

Legends Classic: Villanova, VCU, Michigan and Oregon will play in the Legends Classic at Barclays Center.

Villanova and VCU will meet in one semifinal Nov. 24, with Michigan facing Oregon in the other in the field announced Wednesday.

Battle 4 Atlanta: Final Four teams Florida and Wisconsin could meet in the semifinals of the fourth annual Battle 4 Atlantis.

North Carolina, UCLA, Oklahoma and Georgetown are also in the eight-team field announced Wednesday.

The Gators and Hoyas meet in the opening round Nov. 26, with the winner facing Wisconsin or UAB. Butler will play North Carolina, and UCLA is taking on Oklahoma in the other opening games.

Maui Invite: Arizona will face Missouri in the opening round of the Maui Invitational.

The Wildcats bring back another strong team after just missing the Final Four last season. Purdue will meet Kansas State in the other game in that part of the bracket.

Pittsburgh meets Division II host Chaminade and BYU faces San Diego State in the other bracket of the 31st annual tournament that will be held at the Lahaina Civic Center from Nov. 24-26.

• Hockey

U.S. Hall of Fame: Former Wisconsin coach Jeff Sauer and one of his players, Brian Rafalski, two-time Olympian Karyn Bye Dietz and longtime coach Lou Vairo will be inducted into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame.

Sauer coached the Badgers for 20 seasons, winning two NCAA championships.

Rafalski played 11 seasons in the NHL, winning two Stanley Cup titles with New Jersey and another the Detroit Red Wings.

California to host: The San Jose Sharks and Los Angeles Kings are going to take their rivalry outdoors next season.

The NHL announced Wednesday that the Pacific Division foes will meet at the 49ers' new home in Santa Clara on Feb. 21. The $1.2 billion Levi's Stadium beat out the San Francisco Giants' cozier confines at AT&T Park for the game, which is part of the NHL's growing Stadium Series.

• Elsewhere

U.S. beats Germany: Landon Donovan scored the go-ahead goal in a 2-1 victory over German power Bayern Munich on Wednesday night in the Major League Soccer All-Star game.

Making his record 14th All-Star appearance, Donovan dribbled the ball to the top of the box before blasting it past German World Cup goalkeeper Manuel Neuer in the 70th minute.

Buckeye retires: Arizona Cardinals tight end Jake Ballard has announced his retirement from the NFL.

Ballard was signed by the Giants as an undrafted rookie free agent out of Ohio State in 2010. In the Giants' 2011 Super Bowl season, he started 13 regular season games, catching 38 passes for 604 yards and four touchdowns.

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