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Indians' Francona underwent several surgeries during season

FILE - In this Sept. 1, 2019, file photo, Cleveland Indians manager Terry Francona watches during the first inning of a baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays in St. Petersburg, Fla. The Cleveland Indians expect manager Terry Francona to return for the 2021 season after he missed 47 games this season due to health reasons. Team president Chris Antonetti said Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2020, that the 61-year Francona is back home in Arizona resting and recovering. Francona was hospitalized this season after undergoing surgery for a gastrointestinal issue and then dealing with blood clotting complications.(AP Photo/Chris O'Meara, File)

By TOM WITHERS AP Sports Writer

CLEVELAND (AP) — Indians manager Terry Francona revealed he underwent several surgeries in a four-day span and required an extended stay in intensive care while dealing with major health issues that sidelined him for most of the 2020 season.

Francona missed 48 of Cleveland’s 62 games during the pandemic-shortened season. He initially underwent an operation for a gastrointestinal problem in August that had bothered him for a year.

That was followed by blood clotting that led to more operations and him being admitted to the Cleveland Clinic.

“It was kind of a tough time,” the 61-year-old Francona said Wednesday on a Zoom call from his home in Arizona. “I don’t want to go through that again.”

Francona hopes to manage next season, which would be his ninth with the Indians. He’ll revisit with doctors in seven weeks to gauge his progress.

In the meantime, he needs to get stronger and has resumed swimming and some light activities.

Francona is regarded as one of baseball’s best managers. He won two World Series titles with Boston before coming to Cleveland in 2013.

Francona praised first-base coach Sandy Alomar Jr. for filling in for him this season. The Indians made it to the AL wild-card round before losing two straight at home to the New York Yankees.

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