Francona enjoyed 15 seasons in the major leagues, playing for nine different teams from 1956-1970. He had a solid rookie campaign for Baltimore in 1956 and finished second in Rookie of the Year voting that year. Francona’s best run in the big leagues came from 1959-1962 when he was playing for the Cleveland Indians. He hit .363 with 20 home runs and 79 RBI in 1959 for the Tribe, finishing fifth in the American League MVP vote. The next year his average dipped to .292, but he still managed 17 home runs and led the league with 36 doubles. In 1961 he earned his lone trip the All-Star Game while hitting .301 with 16 home runs. His 85 RBI and 87 runs scored were both career highs. Francona had one more season as a regular with the Indians before being relegated to spot duty for the rest of his career. There was one exception however coming in 1968 when he played in 122 games for the Atlanta Braves, hitting .286 in the process. For his career, Francona was a .272 hitter with 125 home runs. He is the father of current Cleveland Indians manager Terry Francona.
Tito Francona – career stats