We have a change in the front office for the Indianapolis Indians (Class AAA; International League), as Randy Lewandowski takes over the GM reins from Cal Burleson, who remains with the team as vice president of baseball and administrative affairs.
Change doesn’t come often to one of the most stable front offices in Minor League Baseball: Burleson has been GM since 1997, and Lewandowski becomes only the fourth general manager since the organization was incorporated in 1955. Lewandowski has been with the Indians since 1994, the past eight years as assistant general manager. He joined the Tribe as a ticket office intern and accepted a fulltime position shortly after as assistant ticket manager. In 1997 Lewandowski was promoted to director of operations. He was named assistant general manager in 2007.
“Within our plans for continued growth, this announcement designates Randy as a long-term leader of the Indianapolis Indians organization. It’s a distinction that is well-earned,” Burleson said. “Randy has exhibited great leadership in numerous major projects in recent years, including upgrades to our scoreboards, the creation of The Cove, our IT infrastructure, and expansion of the ticket office and souvenir shops.
“Under his enthusiastic leadership it’s no wonder our front office is among The Best Places to Work in Indiana. ”
The Indians have recorded five consecutive years of increased attendance, and this past season broke the 1998 single-season attendance record in 18-year-old Victory Field (660,250).
“Randy is well-qualified to perform the demanding duties required of the Indianapolis Indians’ general manager,” said longtime Tribe President and Board Chairman Max Schumacher. “Since joining the Indians as an intern 20 years ago, he has excelled in a variety of responsibilities that have helped our organization rise to record attendance levels that generate consistent operating profits and shareholder dividends. The Indians organization is well-positioned going forward behind the leadership of Vice President of Baseball and Administrative Affairs Cal Burleson and Randy.
“Our emphasis will continue to be on maximizing the Victory Field experience for our fans,” said Schumacher.
“It is a great honor and privilege to be chosen to lead such a successful and storied franchise,” Lewandowski said. “The leadership and guidance provided over the years by Max, Cal and the Indians’ board of directors has prepared our organization for this next step. The Indianapolis Indians will always strive to be a great community partner and provide our fans the best baseball and entertainment experience possible. Our entire staff relishes the challenge to build upon our recent success, and will continue to make Victory Field the downtown summertime destination.”
Burleson, who just completed his 40th season with the organization — including his 16th as general manager — will continue as the Indians’ primary point of contact with other entities in professional baseball, and be the point person for the Indians’ role in the community.
A Business Management major, Lewandowski graduated from Anderson University in 1993, and was a four-year starter on the Ravens’ baseball team.