CLEVELAND ( Associated Press) — There have been no formal talks between Terry Francona and the Cleveland Guardians over a new contract. A five-minute conversation between friends was enough.
Francona told him that he wanted to continue as manager. The patrons gladly accepted.
Francona’s bizarre partnership with Cleveland will continue through 2023. The 63-year-old has agreed to return to the club despite having the youngest roster to win an AL Center title this season.
The Guardians were eliminated in the Division series.
Although Francona has not formally signed a deal, he said on Friday that he intends to return for an 11th season. After several scares, his health has improved significantly.
Also, the manager wants to take the next step with the team.
“I love the fact that we have something that could be quite special here in the future,” he said. “I had a lot of fun with my players this year. I want to see this group grow and I want to be a part of it.
That’s what the keepers want.
Chris Antoinetti, President of Sports Operations, reiterated that there are no parameters on Francona’s return to his management. Essentially, you can run as long as you want.
“There was never any doubt in our minds that ‘Tito’ would return,” Antoinetti said. “The most important thing is what makes sense to him. We’ve made it very clear: We want ‘Tito’ to continue directing for as long as he wants, if it makes sense to him, then Thinking about his health.”
Francona declined to give a timeline for their deal.
“We’re just going year after year,” he said. “This is exactly how it should be done with my health. The organization has been great to me.”
Francona was forced to sit out several times over the past two seasons due to various health complications, ranging from gastrointestinal problems to staph infections, which led to prolonged hospital stays and multiple surgeries.”
Although she will have another operation next week, Francona has been feeling well for a long time. When asked what the doctors told him after a recent examination, he made fun of his health condition.
“If I breathe I’m fine,” he said. “If I was breathing I passed the test.”
Francona, who won the World Series twice with Boston, admitted that there was a moment in the season when he wondered whether the end had come.
“I was probably thinking about how long I wanted to do it, maybe I thought about it more than I did before,” he said. “I don’t know what that meant this year, but it can be tough sometimes, and I have high expectations from the coaches.”