Fans get early shot at Indians merchandise
By Denise Dick
If the Indians win the World Series tonight, employees at Southern Park Mall’s JCPenney will go into extra innings.
The store will close at 9 p.m., its regular closing time, said Kim Carillon, store manager.
If Cleveland wins, the fourth Tribe victory of the Series’ potential seven games, fans won’t have to wait until Wednesday to buy championship gear.
“As soon as they win, we’re going to open back up – it’s been going to about 11:45 p.m. – and stay open for an hour,” Carillon said.
The doors by the Firestone Complete Auto Care will open for fans who want to don their team’s winning garb early. Only that area of the store will be open.
The full store will reopen at 9 a.m. Wednesday.
There are no similar plans at the Eastwood Mall JCPenney store.
If the Chicago Cubs win tonight, the late-night sale will be pushed to Wednesday – if the Indians clinch the Series that night.
Other stores contacted at Southern Park report no plans for early Indians apparel sales. If the Tribe wins, Jersey World, for example, will open and sell championship apparel the next day.
Carillon said the store has locker-room and championship shirts to mark the anticipated victory.
“We got one shipment already,” the manager said. “We have about 75, and we’re going to be getting one more shipment.”
She is unaware of the store’s ever reopening the night of a championship. The store didn’t reopen after the Cavaliers clinched the National Basketball Association title in June.
Whether the Cubs or the Indians come away World Series champions, it will make sports history.
The last time the Indians won the Series was in 1948, when the team defeated the Boston Braves. They won the 1920 fall classic, too, downing the Brooklyn Robins.
The Indians last competed in the World Series in 1997, losing in seven games to the Florida Marlins. They also competed for the crown in 1995, losing to the Atlanta Braves, and in 1954, losing to the New York Giants.
The Cubs’ championship drought is even longer. That team’s last Series championship was 108 years ago.