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Terry Francona optimistic after interview with Indians

Former Boston Red Sox skipper Terry Francona left his Friday interview with Cleveland Indians executives encouraged and he is excited about a possible return to the field after spending the last year as an ESPN analyst, according to an MLB.com report.

Francona became the Red Sox manager in 2004 and immediately led Boston to a World Series crown, its first since 1918, and won another in 2007 before being fired following a historic collapse at the end of the 2011 season. He wants to manage again, but it sounds like Francona has his sights set only on the Tribe's dugout.

Francona is seemingly vying with former Indians catcher and current bench coach Sandy Alomar Jr., who ended the season as interim manager following Manny Acta's firing on Sept. 27. Francona has his own connections to the Indians - his father played for the Tribe from 1959-64 and worked in the club's front office in 2001 after managing the Philadelphia Phillies from 1997-2000.

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.