CLEVELAND (AP) - Sandy Alomar Jr. dropped the interim manager's tag and simply became a candidate.
Alomar, who guided Cleveland in its final six games after Manny Acta was fired, interviewed Thursday to become the Indians' next full-time manager. Alomar spent most of the day meeting with owner Paul Dolan, general manager Chris Antonetti and other front office members at Progressive Field.
Antonetti was impressed with the job Alomar did in his short stint replacing Acta, who was dismissed after Cleveland collapsed from contention in the second half of the season.
``As expected, Sandy did a great job,'' Antonetti said. ``There was a lot to work through especially for someone who does not have that extensive managing experience so he was doing a lot of things for the first time. But he did an exceptional job in how he went about preparing for it, reaching out to coaches, how he communicated with players and putting himself and the team in a position to succeed. In a short time he did a good job.''
The Indians went 2-4 under Alomar, a six-time All-Star catcher with Cleveland who served as Acta's bench coach this season. Alomar has not managed at any level but he previously interviewed with the Chicago Cubs, Boston and Toronto.
On Friday, former Red Sox manager Terry Francona will interview with the Indians. Francona, who led Boston to World Series titles in 2004 and 2007, previously worked as an adviser in Cleveland's front office and said last week that he would welcome the chance to work for the team again.
Antonetti said Francona has told him he's eager to ``get back on the field'' after spending a year working as a TV analyst.
Francona and Alomar are the only known candidates for Cleveland's managerial opening. Antonetti said the team was ``still working through'' bringing in other candidates.
Antonetti did not put a timeline on naming a new manager, and said the team would not rush into an important decision.
The Indians were 50-49 at one point this season, but a 5-24 record in August - the worst month in franchise history - dropped them in the AL Central. They finished 68-94, 20 games behind division champion Detroit.

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