Through the highs, lows and belt-tightening that have defined the Cleveland Guardians over the last decade, there has always been one constant who could put the franchise and its fan base at ease. Terry Francona.

The man affectionately referred to as “Tito” has overcome serious health problems, the most infamous curse in sports history, clubhouse controversy and one of baseball's lower payrolls in his illustrious 23-year MLB managerial career. And now, with the 2023 season nearly in the books and likely already finished for his club, there might be nothing left for Francona to give to the game to which he's devoted four decades of his life.

Retirement might be a distinct possibility. Though, do not expect the three-time American League Manager of the Year to put the spotlight on him while his team still competes for a divisional crown. Fans know by now that is simply not Francona's style.

“I've talked to {president of baseball operations Chris Antonetti} and {general manager Mike Chernoff} at length about the future and everything because I don't want to put them in any remotely kind of predicament,” the skipper said, per's Mandy Bell. “I think I felt my whole career like the players always have to come first…So I think there's a time- and there will be a time to answer any question there might be about what I'm going to do or not do.”

If you read the whole statement, which is included in Bell's quote tweet above, then it is reasonable to interpret this as a preamble to an official farewell statement after the season concludes. If that is indeed Terry Francona's decision, then expect a national outpouring of support from those who always valued his leadership, on-screen presence and the manner in which he conducted himself.

Of course, the two World Series titles he won with the Boston Red Sox- including the Hollywood script-like 2004 run- as well as an additional AL Pennant with Cleveland, definitely bolsters a Hall-of-Fame worthy resume. He immediately changed the culture and trajectory of both those embattled franchises.

Whether it be the pressure of a big market, the limitations of a small one or the hype and scrutiny that came with managing American icon Michael Jordan, Francona rose above it all. If this is indeed his last dance in The Show, Tito's impact will be felt in the Guardians' dugout and in the stands at Progressive Field in the year 2024 and the many to follow.