Red Sox manager Alex Cora has eyes on World Series despite uncertainty
Boston Red Sox skipper Alex Cora still has his eyes set on a World Series run in 2020 despite the many hurdles that stand in front of the team.
The Red Sox won’t be defending their World Series crown this October, guaranteeing a new king of the castle. With how poorly this season has gone, Boston began to look ahead to next season and beyond. They’re hunting for a new GM, beginning to look at free agency, and are formulating ways to avoid the max penalty of exceeding the CBT once again.
With all that going on, Alex Cora has his eyes firmly set on the 2020 season and where he wants his team to go. Things have been pretty awful for the Red Sox in 2019, especially after the tidal wave of success that came in 2018.
As we know in sports it’s pretty damn hard to repeat as champions, barring the few dynasty teams like the Patriots, Warriors, Spurs, and even yes, the Yankees. We all knew that this season wasn’t going to the be same non-stop party that we had last year but I don’t think anyone expected this far of a drop.
Boston’s ownership would fire Dave Dombrowski with only a few weeks left in the season and have made it clear that their main objective is lowering the payroll. So they fired the man that delivered them their fourth World Series in 15 years and then spoke about needed to trim monetary fat from the ledger books. I don’t know about you but I’m not getting the vibe that the Sox will do what it takes to win, as in year’s past.
One man that hasn’t wavered from the goal since he took his position is Alex Cora. The skipper is firmly planted in the mindset that this team will once again be competitive in October come next fall. Even with the impending fiscal restrictions ahead of him, Cora wants this team to be as strong as the squad that raised the Commissioner’s Trophy in 2018.
"“Regardless of the plan, the main goal is to win the World Series,” Cora said. “I don’t see that changing. There are a few things that are going to change in the upcoming days, weeks or a month. We have to adjust to it. At the end on the field with the players, they understand what we have to do to be competitive next year. That’s my job.”"
Cora has been around this game for a long time not only in management but also as a player. He’s experienced the highs and lows from both sides and that allows him to bring a great poise to the current situation.
He’s also been a member of the Red Sox organization as a player and manager, he knows how FSG operates as well as what it takes to win when it matters most. With everything that’s going on right now, I truly feel like he’s the best guy to have in the position he’s in.
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There’s sure to be some more turnover in the upcoming weeks as the ownership group tries to nail down the team they believe can course-correct the franchise. I know it sounds weird that we’re talking about the Red Sox as if they’re this team that’s been terrible for years, but spending $241M and never being in contention is disastrous. Their reactions to the failures this season are definitely warranted.
Though Cora seems confident on the outside I can only imagine what he’s thinking on the inside. He has to put on a strong front not only for his players but the franchise as a whole, but his job is only going to get more difficult. The Red Sox had some pretty glaring gas in the lineup this past year that need to be addressed. With a massive handcuff on spending this winter, I don’t know how they’re going to fix those holes.
"“I think (roster turnover) just happens every year,” Cora said. “I understand that. Regardless of if you win or you don’t win, it’s not like the late ’90s– you won and you added the two best free agents. It doesn’t work that way anymore. I understand changes are a part of it. At the same time, the talent is still here.”"
When Dombrowski was removed from office the amount of “Cora next” sentiment I saw was just disgusting. AC can only work with the pieces that he’s given and he did what he could with what he had. Were all of his decisions seemingly the best? No, but “Cora Magic’ had an expiration date, we all knew that. In the past few weeks, there’s been some uncertainty between the front office and roster but the owners did put their confidence within Cora and he will be back for 2020.
If Alex Cora is guiding the ship in 2020 I have the faith that the Red Sox can once again be on top of the baseball world. The rest of the league saw what Boston did last year and reacted while the Sox rested on their laurels. Now the gauntlet has been placed and it’s up to Cora and his squad to answer the call. With the challenge in place, I believe Alex when he says the Sox can reach the World Series once again.