Select fans have been clamoring for Omar Vizquel, Jim Thome or even Manny Ramirez to have another run as a member of the Cleveland Indians. While the Indians front office won’t be committing player dollars to any of the aforementioned, they were willing to harness a little nostalgia today with the addition of Mike Hargrove as a special advisor to their staff.
When not filming commercials for local car dealerships, Hargrove’s chief responsibilities will be in the form of aid in baseball, broadcast and business operations. Hargrove spent 22 years in an Indians uniform as a Player, Coach and Manager, but will forever be known as the skipper of the era which many still cling to today.
“I am very excited about the opportunity to once again be a Cleveland Indian and am very much looking forward to helping any way that I can,” said Hargrove earlier today. “Even when I was away and managing other teams I always had an interest in what was happening with the Indians. All I can really say is that it is good to be home.”
The Indians Hall of Famer will assist the team in a variety of roles including assisting Manager Manny Acta’s coaching staff in spring training, joining the STO broadcast team on select telecasts and serving as a resource for the many business, community and charitable endeavors of the franchise. A smart move from a fan sentiment perspective, Hargrove (along with Sandy Alomar who is currently the team’s first base coach) personifies the Glory Days of the mid-90s where he remains as the only head coach to win two American League pennants with the Cleveland Indians.
Hargrove ranks second all-time in club history in managerial wins behind Lou Boudreau (728), third in managerial winning percentage (.550). At this stage, it would surprise no one if there was a Mike Hargrove bobblehead night at some point this summer as the team attempts to milk nostalgia for all it is worth.
“We are excited to have Mike back in the Indians’ family,” said Indians President Mark Shapiro. “His legacy here is as a Player and Manager, as well as his consistent role in the community, provide him with a unique platform to impact our team, our fans and our community.
“It will be an honor to once again work with Mike and we know his impact will be felt by generations of Indians’ fans and players who will all benefit from his knowledge of the game and love of Cleveland Indians baseball.”