Francona OK with not selecting ASG players

Francona OK with not selecting ASG players

CLEVELAND -- Terry Francona will manage the 2017 All-Star Game presented by MasterCard in July for the third time in his managerial career, and the skipper is happy that Major League Baseball has taken the team's roster decisions out of his hands.

Thanks to the current Collective Bargaining Agreement, which was agreed upon in December by MLB and the MLB Players Association, the Commissioner's Office is now responsible for the roster decisions that the manager used to handle in the previous agreement.

Francona, who is managing the American League All-Star team after taking the Indians to the World Series last season, is perfectly OK with the process of not being as involved.

"I found out a little while ago," Francona said, "which was good, because starting about now, we would start keeping lists of the players and stuff. [Pitching coach Mickey Callaway] would keep the pitchers, [bench coach Brad Mills] will keep the position players. And in the new agreement, the manager has zero say-so in the players, which is fine by me."

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Francona, who also managed the AL in 2005 and '08 after winning the World Series with the Red Sox in each of the previous season's campaigns, used to stress over leaving deserving players off the team.

"Unless I have the ability to take some guys from the Indians, I am fine with somebody else picking," Francona said. "It took a lot of time and effort to try to be organized enough where you can call every manager to, one, get their input. And then maybe call them back and say, 'Look, this guy, I know he's worthy, but we can't do it and here's why. If you want me to talk to him, I will.' That eats up a lot of time."

In addition to potentially upsetting players from other teams, Francona is pleased that he no longer has to worry about disappointing players from his own team in the process.

"In '08 in Boston, my first team meeting of the year was because of the All-Star Game because guys were upset," Francona said. "I don't think that they felt like I was fighting hard enough [for them]. Even then, there were so many rules in place. Like, if this guy doesn't go, there is a formula. The manager picks very few players -- used to -- and now it is none. I'm OK with that."

Kluber, Jackson set for Minors rehab

Indians ace Corey Kluber (lower back) and outfielder Austin Jackson (hyperextended left big toe) are both scheduled to play in a Minor League rehab game with Triple-A Columbus on Thursday. Kluber will be limited to around 75 pitches and might only need the one rehab outing before being activated from the 10-day disabled list. Barring any setbacks, Francona said Jackson will likely come off the DL this weekend.

Chisenhall scratched

Center fielder Lonnie Chisenhall was a late scratch from Wednesday's lineup with what the Indians described as a "possible head injury." No other information was immediately available. With Chisenhall out, Daniel Robertson took over in right field for the Tribe.

William Kosileski is a reporter for MLB.com based in Cleveland. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.