Coming off a 68-94 season, Terry Francona has plenty of work to do as the Indians' new manager, and one of his first priorities will be trying to get Justin Masterson and Ubaldo Jimenez back on track after struggling in 2012.
Masterson and Jimenez struggled though the 2012 season after having excellent seasons earlier in their careers. Jimenez posted a 5.40 ERA last season, the highest of his career and a major increase over the 2.88 ERA he posted in 2010. A year after finishing with a 3.21 ERA in 2011, Masterson struggled in 2012, finishing with a 4.93 ERA.
Francona said working with those two will be one of the first priorities of the pitching coach. He said if Masterson and Jimenez are able to get back to form and anchor the rotation, it would take pressure off the younger players as they transition into the major leagues.
"If we could get back towards the 2011 guys, as opposed to the guys we had last year, that's a huge step in the right direction," Francona said, according to ESPN Cleveland. "That's not something I'm arrogant enough to think I have all the answers. But I'm also new enough and energetic enough that I want to try."
While Francona has set priorities and is working on putting together a coaching staff, he is also still finishing up work with ESPN which will wrap up with the World Series.