MLB notebook: Indians manager Francona receives 2-year extension |

MLB notebook: Indians manager Francona receives 2-year extension

The Associated Press

The Indians signed manager Terry Francona to a two-year contract extension through 2018.

The deal announced Tuesday includes club options for the 2019 and 2020 seasons. Francona’s previous contract was set to expire in 2016.

The 55-year-old Francona, who grew up in New Brighton, won two World Series titles with the Red Sox and has led Cleveland to consecutive winning seasons for the first time since 2000-01.

The Indians went 92-70 in Francona’s first season, making the postseason for the first time since 2007. He was named AL Manager of the Year.

Twins welcome Molitor

Hall of Famer Paul Molitor officially took over as manager of the Twins. And he said, “I have no doubt this is where I’m supposed to be.”

The Twins introduced Molitor on Tuesday. He becomes just their third manager since 1986.

Molitor spent last season as a coach on the fired Ron Gardenhire’s staff. He said he takes the job determined to get a team that has lost at least 92 games in four straight seasons back to competitiveness much sooner than many expect.

A-Rod payoff

The U.S. government said Yankees star Alex Rodriguez gave his cousin nearly $1 million last year to keep secret Rodriguez’s use of performance enhancing drugs. In court documents filed last week in Miami, federal prosecutors said Rodriguez made four wire payments totaling $900,000 between June 2013 and September 2013 to settle a threatened lawsuit by Yuri Sucart.

Soriano retires

Seven-time All-Star Alfonso Soriano said he is retiring from the major leagues after a season in which he was released by the Yankees in July.

Soriano, 38, completed in 2014 the final year of his $136 million, eight-year contract he signed with the Cubs before the 2007 season.

He ends his career 50th in baseball history with 412 home runs. He batted .221 with six home runs and 23 RBIs this past season.

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