Red Sox made right decision to bring Alex Cora back as manager

ST. PETERSBURG, FLORIDA - JULY 22: Manager Alex Cora #20 of the Boston Red Sox answers questions from reporters prior to a baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field on July 22, 2019 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)
ST. PETERSBURG, FLORIDA - JULY 22: Manager Alex Cora #20 of the Boston Red Sox answers questions from reporters prior to a baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field on July 22, 2019 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images) /
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The Boston Red Sox have hired Alex Cora as their new manager.

He’s back! After weeks of scouring through a list of candidates for their open managerial position, the Boston Red Sox eventually landed on a familiar face. According to MLB Network’s Jon Heyman, Alex Cora will return as manager of the Red Sox.

Cora has a proven track record of success, having delivered a franchise record win total and a World Series championship to Boston in his first season as manager in 2018.

The Red Sox mutually parted ways with Cora in January during the fallout of the Houston Astros sign-stealing scandal which resulted in a one-year suspension for Cora. Bench coach Ron Roenicke took his place as manager this season but was let go on the final day of the regular season with the Red Sox on their way to posting the fourth-worst record in the majors.

Boston began their search for a new manager knowing they weren’t allowed to speak with Cora until after the World Series when his suspension was lifted. They flew to Puerto Rico to meet with him last week, adding fuel to the fire that the former manager would be returning.

Days went by with the Red Sox refusing to tip their hand. Their list of candidates was slowly dwindling but up until yesterday, Cora faced competition from at least one or two other candidates. Reports that Sam Fuld had a “very real chance” of being hired made us wonder if the Red Sox would go in another direction. If Cora was their top choice, why was it taking so long to make it official?

Ownership has been candid about their praise of Cora since the moment he left. Several Red Sox players have also voiced their support and will welcome him back with open arms.

Ultimately, the decision was left in the hands of Chaim Bloom. The chief baseball officer of the Red Sox has no allegiance to Cora. If anything, his ties were closer to Fuld, who played in Tampa Bay for three seasons when Bloom was running the Rays front office. There was speculation that Bloom preferred his own candidate to separate himself from the previous regime. That might explain the delay in making this decision. Bloom wanted to turn over every rock to find a viable alternative.

In the end, there wasn’t a better candidate than Cora. He’s a proven winner who has shown he can handle the intense scrutiny of this market. He has the trust of his players and the fan base.

On the heels of one of the worst seasons in franchise history, Boston needs a leader who can help right this ship. This isn’t the same roster Cora inherited in 2018, one that was already a contender and needed the right manager to put them over the top. The Red Sox have plenty of work to do in order to return to that level and it might not happen immediately. They need a manager who can hold the team together through a few bumps in the road as they aim to get back on track.

Cora can be that leader. He’s earned the respect of these players and his uncanny ability to connect with them to form a strong bond is one of the traits that made him an appealing candidate the first time he was hired for this position.

Next. Qualifying offers could cross targets off list. dark

There were several great candidates for Bloom to choose from and some of them may go on to find success as managers elsewhere but Cora is the best fit for this team. He never would have left if it weren’t for MLB forcing their hand with a suspension. They had the chance to rectify that by giving him his old job back and the Red Sox made the right choice. Welcome back, AC!