Red Sox conducted first round interviews with at least nine candidates and went on to do second interviews with at least four people outside of Cora: player information coordinator Phillies Sam Fuld, bench coach by Pirates Don Kelly, Yankees bench coach Carlos Mendoza and bench / attack coach Marlins coordinator James Rowson.
On October 30, baseball director Chaim Bloom and GM Brian O’Halloran flew to Puerto Rico to meet with Cora face to face. That meeting was crucial, but didn̵7;t mark the end of the process, as the group’s officials met with another candidate on Monday.
But as the week passed, Red Sox continued to rotate their team, having narrowed their decision to three contenders on Thursday – with sources from major leagues saying the finalist was Cora , Fuld and Rowson. Ultimately, most of the conversation focused on Cora and Fuld, before the team opted to bring Cora back for a second time – a decision that is sure to be pervasive across the organization.
Ron Roenicke managed the Red Sox in 2020 and they won 24-36 and finished last in the American League East. The team announced in September, on the last day of its regular season, that Roenicke will not return as manager for the 2021 season.
When he was hired as interim manager in February, Roenicke was put in charge of a team reeling from horrifying organizational changes.
Roenicke’s work has been made even tougher by the unprecedented efforts and process to run a pandemic season – which has limited contact and conversation between manager and coach. as well as the players. Likewise, Sox asserts that Roenicke – who previously managed in Milwaukee between 2011-15 – demonstrated a skilled leader in disturbing settings.
Cora’s two-season management tenure with Red Sox – including the right to manage a historic title run in 2018 – came to a sudden halt in mid-January. He and the team agreed to break up after MLB investigation into Astros 2017’s contract theft discovered that Cora, as the bench coach for that championship team, was closed a key role in using closed circuit video cameras to steal signs and pass them on to sellers by smashing into trash cans. At the time, Red Sox was also under investigation by MLB for using video playback screens to steal string of symbols in 2018.
MLB has not yet fined Cora – the tournament is pending until the investigation of Red Sox 2018 is complete – when the parting decision is made. But Red Sox says its process was only set up by MLB’s findings on Cora’s role in Astros violations.
But in April, MLB determined that Cora had no role in the 2018 rule violations with the Red Sox and, as a result, he was suspended for a long time until 2020 based solely on his behavior with Astros. Once the MLB clarifies Cora’s misconduct during the Red Sox investigation, his possibility of returning to the potential Red Sox becomes a frequent topic, especially due to his relationship with many members of Red Sox organizations – players, owners and office executives.
After that decision, the team’s president and chief executive officer, Sam Kennedy suggested that he believes Cora should have another chance in the game.
“He needs to go through a recovery process. … What he did was wrong. He admitted it to us and apologized to us for it, ”Kennedy said. “But I strongly believe in the second chance. We all wish him good health ”.
Cora led Red Sox to the World Series championship during his first season as a coach in 2018 after replacing John Farrell. The Red Sox beat the Dodgers in five games to hit a record-setting season in which they won 108 regular season games, the most in a single season in franchise history.
Alex Speier can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on twitter at @alexspeier.