A.J. Hinch is managing again. Could Alex Cora soon follow?
Cora, ousted as Red Sox manager nearly a year ago because of his role in the Astros sign-stealing scandal as Houston’s bench coach, met with Boston’s front office last Friday about their vacant managerial position, according to multiple reports.
Cora was suspended by MLB last season following the league’s investigation into the Astros’ cheating scandal during their 2017 championship run and was then dismissed as Boston’s manager.
The Red Sox, after trading Mookie Betts to the Dodgers in a salary dump, went on to have a miserable season and canned Cora’s replacement, Ron Roenicke.
But Cora’s return to the Fenway Park dugout is no sure thing, according to the reports, despite the interview with Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom and general manager Brian O’Halloran.
They’ve also interviewed Yankees bench coach Carlos Mendoza, Marlins bench coach James Rowson (who previously served as the Yankees minor league hitting coordinator), Phillies player information coordinator Sam Fuld and Pirates bench coach Don Kelly.
Of those candidates, only Cora has managerial experience, but Boston has continued to be in touch with at least some of those candidates.
In the first of his two seasons at the helm in Boston, Cora led the Red Sox to a World Series title in 2018 — when Boston knocked off the Yankees in the ALDS.
Hinch, who was fired by Houston in the wake of the cheating scandal and replaced by Dusty Baker, was also forced to sit out the season by MLB. He was hired to manage the Tigers last month.
Cora returning to the same job he left likely would be viewed as more problematic than Hinch going to Detroit, though questions remain about whether either should be hired again so quickly — or at all — after their involvement in one of the most infamous scandals in baseball history.
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