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Victor Martinez is consoled by teammates after the Indians fell to Boston, 11-2, in Game 7 of the ALCS

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    Cleveland Indians General Manager Mark Shapiro named baseball Executive of the Year

    Tuesday, November 06, 2007
    Paul Hoynes
    Plain Dealer Reporter

    Orlando, Fla.- Indians General Manager Mark Shapiro, for the second time in three years, has been named Executive of the Year by The Sporting News.

    Shapiro's Indians won the American League Central, beat the New York Yankees in the AL Division Series and held a 3-1 lead over the Red Sox in the AL Championship Series before losing three straight to eventual World Series champion Boston. The Indians won 102 games overall and tied the Red Sox for the baseball's best regular-season record at 96-66.

    The 40-year-old Shapiro received the award Monday night in front of his peers at a banquet that starts the annual general managers meetings.

    "There's not one moment in the season that stands out," Shapiro said. "I just remember standing in the locker room after we clinched the division and thinking how many games we had to win to get to that point. Then I looked around at all the different players celebrating and knew we'd done it with people we believed in and didn't have to compromise those beliefs in any way."

    Forty-seven big-league executives voted for the award. Shapiro won with 13 votes. Colorado GM Dan O'Dowd, Shapiro's mentor when they worked together with the Indians, finished second with 11.

    "I voted for Mark," said O'Dowd, whose Rockies lost to Boston in the World Series. "I thought he had a great year."

    The Indians started the season with a payroll of $61.5 million, ranked 23rd out of 30 teams. They increased their regular-season victory total by 18 games from 2006 to 2007.

    In the division series, they beat the Yankees, the team with the biggest payroll in baseball at nearly $200 million, in four games. Boston, with the second-largest payroll at $140 million, beat the Tribe in seven games.

    "We've always been big fans of the Cleveland Indians," said Toronto GM J.P. Ricciardi. "They do a lot of things right and they're gentlemen."

    Shapiro previously won the award in 2005 when the Indians won 93 games. They failed to qualify for the postseason that year by losing six of their last seven games.

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