Results tagged ‘ Progressive Field ’

“Friends of Francona” program honors veteran Chris Esselburn on Memorial Day weekend


Chris Esselburn and his finacee Diana

In 2013 when Terry Francona became manager of the Cleveland Indians, he started the “Friends of Francona” program as a way to recognize and give back to deserving people throughout the season. Through the program, a different person is invited to attend a select Sunday home game and receive 10 complimentary Club Lounge tickets and $20 in fun money on each ticket. All of this is paid for by Tito and WTAM.

In celebration of Memorial Day, veteran Chris Esselburn was honored during Sunday’s game, making him the first recipient of this season’s Friends of Francona tickets.

“It means a lot. You never get tired of hearing the thank you’s and things like that,” Esselburn said. “To have someone like him do that it means a lot, especially this weekend as we remember those guys who didn’t come home.”

Chris, a Wooster native and a lifelong Tribe fan, joined the Marine Corps right after high school. He became a sergeant and served two tours of duty in Iraq in 2004 and 2007-2008.

Chris and his fiancée, Diana, currently live near Buffalo, N.Y., but were in town this weekend taking engagement pictures. As soon as they got into town, Chris realized the Tribe was playing and turned the radio to WTAM hearing the familiar voice of Tom Hamilton, a person closely tied to his favorite memory of the Tribe.

“My dad used to turn the speakers on to Tom Hamilton, and I remember he had this amazing home run call. Jim Thome hit this laser beam home run out of the park, and that was one of my favorite memories,” Esselburn said. “And of course to see Omar Vizquel play; he was my favorite player growing up.”

The “Friends of Francona” selection was a complete surprise for Chris arranged by his fiancée, and kept quiet by his eight friends and family members who were also in attendance. In addition to getting tickets from Tito, Chris was recognized in the sixth inning with a scoreboard read and a Kipnis jersey – small tokens to someone that sacrificed so much for our country.

“I always tell people to look up one person. There are so many stories of valor and courage from our guys that were deployed, and some of those stories ended with those guys. We remember them on Monday,” explained Chris. “If you can, take five minutes, or a minute to look up and think about one guy who locally was deployed and maybe didn’t come home. Find out what his story is. That means more than anything – not forgetting those guys.”


–TribeVibe contributor Angela Martin

From A 100-year-old and his love of family, golf and the Cleveland Indians


Surely you remember our post about Chuck Yasenka, the 100-year-0ld who recently threw out the first pitch at Progressive Field.’s Zack Meisel wrote a more in-depth profile of , and if possible, Chuck became even cooler. Read the full profile by clicking here.

An excerpt:

Rich Yasenka sat with his father in a car on Ontario Street in the shadow of Progressive Field.

As the two waited for Chuck’s wheelchair, Rich told his father he would be throwing out the ceremonial first pitch before that evening’s affair.

“You have to be kidding me,” Chuck replied.

By the time he emerged from the opening in the left-field wall and reached the track between the Indians’ dugout and the infield, Chuck had conquered any anxiety he felt, or any anxiety a 100-year-old can possibly experience. After all, this man has twice survived colon cancer, out-lived the 10-year warranty on the Hyundai Sonata he purchased at the age of 90 and maintained an impressive handicap on the golf course until the age of 91. How much could a ceremonial first pitch actually accelerate his heart rate?

Not much, as Rich quickly learned. Chuck turned toward his son and shared a secret.

“I’m going to throw a spitball,” he said.

Corey Kluber’s incredible night: Photos, historical context

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Some historical context on AL Cy Young winner Corey Kluber’s start on Wednesday night:

  • Tossed 8.0 inning (6.2 no-hit innings), striking out a career-high 18 batters (8.0IP, 1H, 18SO, 1HB, 113 pitches/74 strikes)…marks the most strikeouts by a pitcher in a MLB game this season (see note below for more).
  • Struck-out a career-high 18 batters, the first Tribe pitcher to record 18-or-more strikeouts in a game since Bob Feller punched out 18 in game one of a doubleheader on Oct. 2, 1938 against Detroit…marks the most strikeouts in a MLB game since Milwaukee’s Ben Sheets 18 K’s on May 16, 2004 against Atlanta…most in an A.L. game since Toronto’s Roger Clemens struck out 18 on Aug. 25, 1998 against Kansas City…Kluber fanned 6 consecutive batters for the sixth time in Indians history…holds the team record with 7 consecutive strikeouts (May 4, 2014 against Chicago-AL).
  • Becomes 1 of 5 different pitchers in Major League history to strike out 18-or-more batters without allowing a walk, joining Luis Tiant (1x), Roger Clemens (3x), Randy Johnson (2x) and Kerry Wood (1x)…Kluber is the first Major League pitcher with 18+ K’s/0 BB since Arizona’s Randy Johnson struck out 20 and did not allow a walk on May 8, 2001 against Cincinnati…the first A.L. pitcher to pull the trick since Toronto’s Roger Clemens did so on Aug. 25, 1998 against Kansas City (18 SO, 0BB)…first Indians pitcher to do so since Luis Tiant on July 3, 1968 against Minnesota (19SO, 0BB, 10.0IP).
  • Was given a 2-run cushion for just the second time this season, as the Indians led Minnesota 2-0 in the 6th inning on April 17…has had a one-run lead in two separate games: April 11 against Detroit in the 7th, May 2 against Toronto in the 3rd.
  • Recorded double-digit strikeouts for the 15th time in his career, good for 6th all-time in Indians history breaking a tie with Bartolo Colon (14 double-digit SO games)…is 9-0 when recording 10-or-more punchouts in a game…Kluber joins Dean Chance (18-0 in 20G) and Denny McLain (17-0 in 18G) as the only pitchers since 1914 to record double-digit strikeouts and not lose a game in at least 15 starts.

–Photos by Dan Mendlik and Sarah Sachs/Notes from Indians Baseball Information Department

Indians unveil Bob Feller exhibit in Terrace Club at Progressive Field

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Exhibit features items from former museum in Feller’s hometown in Iowa, including glove from Opening Day no-hitter, Navy jacket and more

The Cleveland Indians today unveiled a new Bob Feller Exhibit in the Terrace Club at Progressive Field, a celebration of the life and career of one of the most storied baseball players in history.

The exhibit features items from the former museum in his hometown of Van Meter, Iowa, including:

  • Feller/Ruth bat from Pulitzer Prize winning photograph “The Babe Bows Out”
  • Feller’s opening day no-hitter glove
  • Feller’s father’s catcher’s mitt
  • “Gopher Ball” signed by Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig
  • One of Bob’s Navy jackets
  • Bob Feller Act of Valor Award

Also included in the exhibit are a timeline of Bob’s life and a touchscreen monitor where fans can see videos and photos of Feller.

“This exhibit is another way we can remember and honor Bob’s life and accomplishments for current and future generations of Tribe fans,” said Indians Senior Vice President of Public Affairs Bob DiBiasio.

The Terrace Club is free and open to all ticket holders again in 2015, and fans can either visit the club to view the new Feller exhibit or make reservations to dine in the Terrace Club, which offers some of the best views of the playing field in the ballpark.

Reservations can be made by visiting and searching for Terrace Club.

PHOTO GALLERY: Cleveland Indians Batting Practice, May 12

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–Photos by Sarah Sachs

PHOTO GALLERY: A fun Sunday at Progressive Field as the Indians beat the Twins

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–Photos by Dan Mendlik/Sarah Sachs


100-year-old Chuck Yasenka throws first pitch at Progressive Field Friday night


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Chuck Yasenka, a 100-year-old Broadview heights resident and Indians fan, threw out the ceremonial first pitch before Friday night’s Indians game against the Minnesota Twins at Progressive Field.

Yasenka is a two-time colon cancer survivor who played golf into his 90s; he last attended an Indians game in person 10 years ago. Over 100 friends and family members were in attendance to celebrate the occasion with him.

After his three great granddaughters sent a birthday card to the Indians with a hand-written note, some members of the organization – including Corey Kluber, Michael Bourn and Sandy Alomar — signed the card for him; that card will be presented to him before the game on Friday.

And now, the night in Tweets:

PHOTO GALLERY: Cleveland Indians Batting Practice, May 8 vs. Minnesota Twins

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Fans guide to Cleveland Indians 6-game homestand vs. Twins, Cardinals beginning May 8



A guide to the six-game homestand that begins Friday at Progressive Field vs. the Twins:

Note: District Tickets are sold out for Friday and nearly sold out for Saturday — if you want District Tickets for remaining home games, especially weekend games, get them now by clicking here.

6:10PM starts: The Cleveland Indians remind fans that Tuesday and Wednesday’s home games against the St. Louis Cardinals at Progressive Field will begin at 6:10PM ET, an hour earlier than typical weeknight games.

The club is testing an earlier weeknight start time during the season’s early months to support the best interests of our players and fans, in an effort to avoid potential weather issues. Additionally, families and children who may be attending the games will arrive home an hour earlier.

Indians, Uber team up: The Indians are proud to partner with Uber Cleveland to provide Tribe fans with safe, reliable transportation to and from Progressive Field.

Fans can use code “TRIBE20” to take $20 off their first ride. Uber will also be at the The Corner at Progressive Field this Friday, May 8 as well as numerous times throughout the season distributing items and signing up riders.

All-Star Game voting now open: Voting is now open for the 2015 All-Star Game, and for the first time, it will be done completely online through the 2015 MLB All-Star Game Ballot at

Fans can vote for Michael Brantley, Jason Kipnis and the rest of their favorite Tribe players to get them to the 2015 All-Star Game, July 14 on FOX from Cincinnati. Fans can vote up to 35 times at, or visit the voting booth at Progressive Field, near Section 153. Indians staff will be on site to assist fans in voting for their favorite Tribe players


Friday, May 8 vs. Twins @ 7:10PM

ALL GATES: OPEN at 6PM (Right Field Gate/Family Deck open at 5PM)

Broadcast Information: SportsTime Ohio-HD, WMMS/IRN (radio subject to change)

Sugardale Dollar Dog Night: Friday will be the first of 15 dollar dog nights throughout the 2015 season. There will also be a Sugardale sampling on Gateway Plaza before the game.

50/50 Raffle: The 50/50 Raffle will be available for all home games in the 2015 season. The raffle supports Cleveland Indians Charities in its mission to provide softball and baseball programs to the underprivileged youth of Cleveland, among other philanthropic efforts.

Uber representatives will be at The Corner: Uber Cleveland will be at The Corner bar passing out tchotchkes and providing fans with a passcode for a free first ride up to $20.


Saturday, May 9 vs. Twins @ 4:10PM


Broadcast Information: SportsTime Ohio-HD, WTAM/WMMS/IRN

1995 AL Championship Commemorative Pennant, courtesy of Northeast Ohio Media Group: 10,000 fans will receive a 1995 AL Championship Commemorative Pennant upon entering Saturday’s game.

RTA route changes: Due to ODOT construction and RTA rail repairs, the West Side Red Line will be replaced by buses between Tower City and the Airport from Saturday, May 9 through Sunday, May 10.

Pregame activities in the Right Field District: Come to the ballpark early and enjoy pregame activities with the Strikers including air hockey, jenga and more!

Terrace Club: The third floor of the Terrace Club will once again be open to the public in 2015. Check it out for great food and views – make reservations on!



Sunday, May 10 vs. Twins @ 1:10PM


Broadcast Information: SportsTime Ohio-HD, WMMS/IRN (radio subject to change)

KeyBank Kids Fun Day: Back for another season, KeyBank Kids Fun Day will take place every Sunday of 2015. Families can enjoy kid friendly activities in the newly renovated Kids Clubhouse including performances from Manny The Magician, Great Lakes Science Center, Jungle Terry and a pregame interview with a current Indians player.

MLB Honorary Bat Girl presentation: Alecia Dennis, a 26-year-old mother of one from the Columbus area, is the Indians representative in Major League Baseball’s 2015 Honorary Bat Girl Contest, which seeks to recognize those who have experienced cancer. Alecia will be recognized pregame.

Susan G. Komen Pink Ribbon: 100 people will be on the field pregame creating a large pink ribbon to honor those who are fighting breast cancer.

Kids Run the Bases Presented by Cleveland Clinic Children’s: Young Tribe fans will have the opportunity to run the bases like their favorite players after the game. All kids (12 & under) can stay immediately after the game to take part, and will receive an item from Cleveland Clinic Children’s when they’re finished.

Purell post-game sampling: Fans are able to take free samples of Purell hand sanitizer after the game. Samples will be available at all gates.



Tuesday, May 12 vs. Cardinals @ 6:10PM

*ALL GATES: OPEN at 5PM (Right Field Gate opens at 4PM)

Broadcast Information: SportsTime Ohio-HD, WTAM/WMMS/IRN (radio subject to change)

Indians tote bag, courtesy of MLB Network: 10,000 fans will receive an Indians tote bag upon entering the gate.

50/50 Raffle: The 50/50 Raffle will be available for all home games in the 2015 season. The raffle supports Cleveland Indians Charities in its mission to provide softball and baseball programs to the underprivileged youth of Cleveland, among other philanthropic efforts.

Buy Early to Save: Fans who purchase tickets early and online will always receive the best prices on game tickets. Buying tickets online rather than at the box offices provide fans the best deals.


Wednesday, May 13 vs. Cardinals @ 6:10PM

*ALL GATES: OPEN at 5PM (Right Field Gate opens at 4PM)

Broadcast Information: SportsTime Ohio-HD, WTAM/WMMS/IR

Members of OSU wresting team to throw out first pitch: The Ohio State University wrestling national champions Logan Stieber and Nathan Tomasello will be throwing the ceremonial first pitches at today’s game.

Ballpark app: Download’s Ballpark app and stay up to date on all things Tribe. Ballpark features mobile check-in offers from KeyBank, Majestic and New Era, an interactive concourse map, exclusive team videos and more.


Thursday, May 14 vs. Cardinals @ 12:10PM


Broadcast Information: SportsTime Ohio-HD, WTAM/IRN (radio subject to change)

Today’s Getaway Game is presented by the UPS Store: The UPS Store presents today’s getaway travel game. A representative from one of more than 40 local The UPS Store locations will throw out the first pitch.


FAQ: New Season Ticket Holder-only entrance at Progressive Field

Gate STH

Season Ticket Holders now have another exclusive perk at Progressive Field: Their very own, Season Ticket Holder-only entrance at the new Right Field Gate!

Upon announcing that news to Season Ticket Holders on Monday, we received a few questions – so we decided to put together a little Q&A on the topic.

If Season Ticket Holders have any other questions regarding the new entrance, they should contact their Client Service Specialist or call 216-420-HITS.

How will you know I’m a Season Ticket Holder, and conversely, that people aren’t Season Ticket Holders to prevent them from taking advantage of the new gate?

Your tickets denote your support of our club as a Season Ticket Holder. Both Print at Home tickets and digital tickets managed through the Ballpark app explicitly identify Season Ticket Holder tickets, while Tribe Rewards Exchanges also have identifiers that ballpark staff will know indicates Season Ticket Holders.

If tickets are forwarded to friends and they add to passbook (don’t have ballpark app) will it say STH?

Only Season Ticket Holders using Passbook to enter the ballpark will be allowed through the gate. The gate staff will look at the Seat Locator on Passbook tickets to identify Season Ticket Holders. (Since this occurs after entrance through the walk-through metal detectors, we will monitor usage of this perk by non-Season Ticket Holders and adjust as needed. But we will allow Season Ticket Holders using Passbook to enter the new Season Ticket Holder-only entrance.)

Does this affect distribution of promotions?

It does not. Unless reserved through Promo Pass or through Tribe Rewards, promotional items will be given out on a first come, first served basis at all gates. We encourage Season Ticket Holders to arrive early, especially on high-demand dates, to ensure they receive a promotional item. New this year: Promotional items only will be available at the Tribe Rewards kiosk on the day of the game, and then available on the Tribe Rewards site beginning the morning after the game.

What about tickets outside of my plan? Can I use the Season Ticket Holder-only entrance for those tickets?

Only tickets exchanged via Tribe Rewards and those tickets that are part of your Season Ticket plan will have the appropriate designation to allow you to enter the new Season Ticket Holder-only entrance. Single Game tickets purchased in addition to your plan tickets and Tribe Rewards exchanges will not be accepted at the Season Ticket Holder entrance. We are actively looking for a way for those tickets to be accepted at new entrance, but at this time, unfortunately, they will not be.


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