By Marty Gitlin
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Hafner hit his 200th home run for the Indians in 2012. Yet this was the team's fourth consecutive losing season. The Pitcher CC Sabathia often dominated for the Indians. Cleveland, however, dealt him to Milwaukee in July 2008 because of payroll concerns. Indians brought in Terry Fran- Were the Indians, rich in cona as manager in October. history going back more than In Francona's first season at 100 years, going to put the pieces the helm, they posted a win- together for another winning ning record, going 92–70.
Gitlin has won more than 45 awards in his 25 years as a writer, including first place for general excellence from the Associated Press. He lives with his wife and three children.
The team did so by defeating the New York Yankees in the AL Division Series (ALDS) and the Baltimore Orioles in the ALCS. This time, the Indians were on the verge of the ultimate triumph. They led 2–1 heading into the bottom of the ninth inning of Game 7 against the host Florida Marlins. Three more outs and Cleveland fans would be celebrating the team’s first World Series title since 1948. But closer Jose Mesa, who Terrible Temper, Great Hitter Perhaps both the best pure power hitter and most volatile player in Indians history was Albert Belle.