Red Sox hire Astros bench coach Alex Cora as new manager
The former big-league infielder also worked as GM of the Puerto Rico national team
ESPN is reporting that Cora will receive a three-year contract, plus a club option for 2021, to become the 47th individual to manage the Red Sox. He's the third to do so since the club parted ways with Terry Francona following the 2011 season.
Cora, 42, spent parts of 14 seasons in the majors. He hit .243/.310/.338 for his career, during which he was primarily used as an extra infielder. Although Cora bounced around a lot, seeing action with six organizations, he appeared in more than 300 games with the Red Sox -- his second-most with any one team, only to the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Cora released the following statement through the team:
"I am extremely honored and humbled to be named manager of the Boston Red Sox and I want to thank Dave, John Henry, Tom Werner, and Sam Kennedy for giving me such a tremendous opportunity. Returning to the Red Sox and the city of Boston is a dream come true for me and my family and I look forward to working towards the ultimate goal of winning another championship for this city and its great fans. At the same time, I want to express my appreciation for Jim Crane, Jeff Luhnow, A.J. Hinch, and the entire Houston Astros organization for giving me the chance to start my coaching career. It has been a very special season and an incredible organization to be a part of and I am looking forward to the World Series and winning with this group."
While Cora's big-league experience is plentiful, he's a relative newcomer to the bench. This season was his lone year as the Astros' bench coach. He'd previously done broadcasting work, while also serving as the general manager of the Puerto Rico national baseball team.
Former Detroit Tigers manager Brad Ausmus was one of the Red Sox's other top candidates. Ausmus had previously worked with Red Sox team president Dave Dombrowski in Detroit.
Dombrowski also released a statement through the team:
"We were very impressed when we interviewed Alex. He came to us as a highly-regarded candidate, and from speaking with him throughout this process, we found him to be very knowledgeable, driven, and deserving of this opportunity. He is a highly respected and hardworking individual who has experience playing in Boston. Alex also has a full appreciation for the use of analytical information in today's game and his ability to communicate and relate to both young players and veterans is a plus. Finally, the fact that he is bilingual is very significant for our club."
In Boston, Cora inherits a team that's won back-to-back AL East titles but has been bounced in the ALDS in each of the last two seasons. Not long after this year's playoff loss to the Astros, the Red Sox dismissed Cora's predecessor, John Farrell.
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