CLEVELAND (AP) ó The field known as "The Jake" is no more. The home of the Cleveland Indians now will be called Progressive Field.
Car insurance company Progressive Corp. and the American League team have come to terms on a 16-year naming rights deal for the 42,000-seat downtown ballpark.
The park had been known as Jacobs Field since it opened in 1994, named when the team had been owned by Cleveland-area businessman Richard Jacobs. Progressive will pay $3.6 million a year for the rights.
Indians president Paul Dolan said at a news conference on Friday that the club is aware that the team's history _including two World Series appearances ó is tied to fans' emotional connections with Jacobs field.
"I'm sure the fans' thinking about this place being something other than Jacobs Field will take a while," Dolan said. "But I'm also sure that over time, Progressive Field will also sink in with the fans' psyche."
Glenn Renwick, Progressive's chairman and chief executive, said that the cost of the naming rights represents about 1% of Progressive's annual advertising and marketing budget.
"Quite frankly, as a company we are approached all the time with opportunities for various sponsorships. This came after a lot of thought. It's a great opportunity for both our customer base and the fan base," Renwick said.