Cleveland Indians Rumors: Is Mark Shapiro About to Jump Ship?


Indians’ Club President Shapiro high on the list for similar position in Toronto

First, if it is true that the Cleveland Indians‘ Club President Mark Shapiro is a frontrunner for a job with a likely similar title in Toronto, could you blame him for leaving? The Indians have been competitive several times in recent years, including 2005 and 2007 when Shapiro’s colleagues voted him Sporting News Executive of the Year. At that time, he was the only executive to have won the award twice. 

While Shapiro has helped to build a strong core of young players, it’s clear the Indians have taken a step back this season. In fact, the team with just the 23rd ranked payroll to start the season at $88 million have actually CUT from that. The possible suitor in the Toronto Blue Jays? Started the season 10th at $121.8 million and have added to it..heavily.

After toiling in Cleveland for years, Shapiro is probably ready to go somewhere with the ability to do..well, anything. For a small market, he’s done a fine job with the Indians–including playoff excitement in the last two season. Last year fell short, but there were high hopes to open the year. Those have all washed away, and all that’s left is the promise of next year. But will next year for Shapiro be north of the border?

Shapiro, 48, joined the Indians in 1992 and was the team’s farm director from 1993 to ’98 and assistant GM in ’99 and 2000 before serving as GM from November 2001 to 2010. As club president, Shapiro has overseen a larger part of baseball operations–including several renovations to Progressive Field (Some good, some…eh, not so much). But the Blue Jays plan to do some work on the aging Rogers Centre soon, which could play into Shapiro’s favor.

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If Shapiro takes the position in Toronto, it really won’t be a surprise to many. After the Blue Jays missed on Dave Dombrowski, who took the Red Sox position–the Jays have been preparing for this move since last season when current president/CEO Paul Beeston announced he would retire at the end of the season.

Everyone has an opinion on how the Indians are managed. Has Shapiro been the driving force while the Dolan’s have done nothing but handcuff him? Or has he had plenty of opportunities but shown he’s nothing more than “get it close but that’s it” type of guy?