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Terry Francona wants John Axford back in the closer’s role eventually

Jun 7, 2014, 6:30 PM EDT

John Axford AP

About a month ago, Indians manager Terry Francona took John Axford out of the closer’s role after the right-hander had compiled a 4.91 ERA in 14 2/3 innings while blowing two saves and losing three games. Since then, the Indians have used Cody Allen, Bryan Shaw, Scott Atchison, and Mark Rzepczynski to nail down saves and it’s been working out well.

As’s Jordan Bastian reports, however, Francona would like to see Axford back in the closer’s role eventually even though his current corps of hurlers are getting the job done. Since his demotion into lower-leverage innings, Axford has a 1.08 ERA with 11 strikeouts and four walks in 8 1/3 innings.

  1. edelmanfanclub - Jun 7, 2014 at 9:22 PM

    Dont fix something that isnt broken, why would you turn back to axford if allen is holding it down, while axford slipped up?

  2. pbconnection782 - Jun 7, 2014 at 11:49 PM

    Yeah, because Allen has done such a terrible job. Stop trying to shoehorn relievers into roles.

  3. Kevin Gillman - Jun 8, 2014 at 12:10 AM

    Axford’s ERA wasn’t bad, considering prior to his last few appearances as closer, he was doing what he could to save the games, going 9 for 11. But what hurt, and truly no closer should do this were the walks, 17 walks in 14 2/3 innings is unacceptable, and if that had continued, he was going to play with fire, eventually. So keep it as is, because while he is doing better, he still has had 4 walks in 8 1/3 innings.

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