BOSTON — Is Red Sox Manager Alex Cora as good as gone? It’s the question many Sox fans keep asking in light of Monday’s news. Yesterday, the Houston Astros’ general manager and manager were let go following a cheating scandal investigated by Major League Baseball – one that MLB claims was run by Cora, then the Astros’ bench coach and the current Red Sox skipper.
So the question remains, does Cora survive this offseason?
Critics that spoke with Boston 25 News say the Red Sox should cut ties with Cora, despite the 2018 World Series championship. They expect his punishment to be just as bad, if not worse, once MLB’s investigation concludes.
Steve Buckley of The Athletic Boston and Tony Massarotti of 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Felger and Mazz show both spoke with Boston 25 News on the subject. They said they were stunned by the scandal that’s rocked baseball.
“I was stunned the reporting by the Athletic indicated that Alex Cora was involved in what happened in Houston, but Rob Manfred’s report takes it to a whole different level,” Buckley said.
Major League Baseball slamming the Astros with a hefty fine, loss of draft picks and year-long suspensions for their manager, AJ Hinch, and general manager, Jeff Luhnow, because of an ongoing sign-stealing scandal. MLB says that scheme was managed by then bench coach, Alex Cora, and eventually led to Houston’s World Series win in 2017.
So why is Cora still employed by the Red Sox?
“I’m guessing at this juncture they’re waiting for the MLB report to come out with what the Red Sox did,” Buckley said.
Massarotti, a longtime baseball writer, says Cora’s managerial fate is sealed.
“The precedent set yesterday both from the league and the Astros doesn’t leave the Red Sox much wiggle room,” he said.
As the Sox and their fans wait for baseball’s investigation into their alleged cheating in the 2018 title year, Massarotti says Cora is guilty of one thing, since teams were warned about this type of behavior two years ago.
“It’s arrogance,” Massarotti said. “The commissioner told them cut it out, cut it out, and he did it anyway.”
Timing of this cheating scandal couldn’t be worse for the Old Towne Team as Red Sox season ticket renewals are due Wednesday.
“I see Cora to be very bright, I deem him to be, at his core, a good guy and a good baseball guy,” Massarotti said. “I also think that he’s ultra-competitive and he's looking for an edge, and he took it too far.”
Back in 2007, the Patriots were docked a first-round pick, were forced to pay a heavy fine and were ridiculed as cheaters for more than a decade after ‘Spygate’ transpired.
“In both cases they were warned to stop and they did it anyway,” Massarotti said. “And once that happens, you're really spitting in the face of the league and the commissioner.”
Given Spygate with the Patriots, should Cora have learned? Buckley says no.
“I don’t think it’s incumbent on the Red Sox to learn from the Patriots,” he said. “I don’t think Spygate transfers to MLB.”
While we wait on Cora’s future, Alex Cora is scheduled to be part of the “Winter Weekend” fan event starting Friday. Boston 25 News reached out to the Red Sox for comment, but did not hear back from the organization before time of publication.
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