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Manager Acta's option picked up by Indians

By Tom Withers

Associated Press

Published: Thursday, Sept. 29 2011 3:25 p.m. MDT

Cleveland Indians manager Manny Acta looks out from the dugout during the sixth inning of a baseball game against the Detroit Tigers in Detroit, Monday, Sept. 26, 2011.

Carlos Osorio, Associated Press

Enlarge photo»

CLEVELAND — The Cleveland Indians have picked up manager Manny Acta's contract option for 2013.

Acta kept the Indians in contention for much of this season before injuries overwhelmed the young club, which finished second in the AL Central. Cleveland went 80-82, an 11-game improvement over last season.

Acta was signed through 2012, and the Indians rewarded him by exercising the option for 2013. He's 149-175 in two seasons with Cleveland.

"When we reflect on the successes we've had and the progress we've made, it began with Manny and his coaching staff and the tone they set in spring training," general manager Chris Antonetti said. "I feel much better about where we are today than where we were a year ago, and I think a lot of that has to do with Manny's leadership."

"I'm very happy that I know I will be here for at least two years," Acta said. "This is a place I want to be."

Acta was hired following the 2009 season. He also was a candidate for the Houston job at the time but thought the Indians were closer to winning.

"I made the decision based on some facts, and over the last two years they have been confirmed," he said. "That was based on our farm system, our young players who are making an impact at the big league level and our chances of being competitive and eventually winning. I've seen it in two years."

Acta's staff already has undergone radical change for next season. On Wednesday, bench coach Tim Tolman disclosed he has Parkinson's disease and will not be back, and pitching coach Tim Belcher stepped down to spend more time with his family.

"Those are the two guys I relied on the most during the game," Acta said. "It's not going to be easy. We're going to work hard to bring two guys in to help me."

Antonetti said the remainder of the coaching staff will return. Sandy Alomar Jr., the first base coach the last two seasons, will be Acta's bench coach in 2012. Hitting coach Bruce Fields, third base coach Steve Smith and bullpen coach Scott Radinsky also will be back. Antonetti said Radinsky will be considered for the pitching coach position.

Alomar is rumored to be a candidate for the Chicago White Sox job that opened up when Ozzie Guillen left. Antonetti wouldn't say whether the White Sox have asked for permission to talk to Alomar, but added the Indians will not stand in his way.

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