Terry Francona seems to suddenly have a lot to work with in Cleveland, as the Indians have added a variety of talent. From the middle-of-the-order bat that the club has longed for in recent years, Nick Swisher, to a solid backup infielder who can spell players at several positions, Mike Aviles, the Tribe looks to have a pretty respectable looking team.
The 53-year-old manager earned a lot of respect, himself, when leading the Boston Red Sox to their first two World Series titles in 2004 and 2007 since Babe Ruth was purchased from the club by the New York Yankees in January of 1920.
Eight straight winning seasons weren't enough to please fans and ownership, who suddenly forgot where the team was for the previous 80-plus years when the Red Sox slipped from two games up in first place on Aug. 27, 2011, to finishing seven games back, going just 7-20 in September, a collapse for the ages.
Shockingly, the club won 90 games in 2011, despite the September collapse. Francona was able to get a lot of his players due to the relationships that he had with them.
Can he get anything out of any remaining free agents? While the Indians don't have tremendous needs offensively, there are several players out there who could still help the club, guided by the managerial skills of Terry Francona.