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Francona on struggling Guardians: 'We need to do better'

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After a surprising run to the AL Central title last season, the Cleveland Guardians have struggled out of the gate in 2023.

Manager Terry Francona knows it's time for his club to start playing better as the team looks to rally from a disappointing 21-28 record.

"We need to do better," Francona said Friday, according to The Athletic's Zack Meisel. "If yelling and screaming at them made them do better, I'd do it. That's not going to make somebody hit. Changing the lineup, if I felt that would make somebody hit, I'd do it."

The Guardians signed veterans Josh Bell and Mike Zunino in the offseason in an effort to improve their offense. However, the additions haven't paid dividends thus far as Cleveland ranks last in the league in runs scored (169) and home runs (30) through 49 games.

"This is kind of a rarity where you see everybody's not quite at the level - usually it's like three (hot) and three (cold) and everybody else in the middle," Francona said. "So, we're going to have to work through it."

All-Star third baseman Jose Ramirez is currently the only regular in the Guardians' lineup sporting an OPS above .700.

Cleveland opens up a three-game series at Progressive Field against the St. Louis Cardinals on Friday night.

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