Alex Cora, the bench coach for the Houston Astros, is expected to be named the new Red Sox manager, as soon as their season is over, according to reports from several sources, including Fox Sports reporter Ken Rosenthal.
The team made the announcement on Sunday, a day after Cora's Astros reached the World Series.
Cora will take over for John Farrell, who was let go by Boston after falling to the Astros in the ALDS. "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". Cora will remain with the Astros until the Series is finished and has a three-year deal, with a club option for 2021.
The 42-year-old was named bench coach of the Astros in November of 2016 after a 14-year Major League Baseball career that saw him appear for The Los Angeles Dodgers, Cleveland Indians, New York Mets, Texas Rangers, Washington Nationals and Red Sox, with whom he captured the 2007 World Series title.
Though Cora has never managed in the Major Leagues, he is viewed by many in the industry as a hot commodity. The Red Sox faced renewed racial scrutiny this season after Orioles outfielder Adam Jones reported being subjected to racial slurs at Fenway Park.
Boston's decision to hire Cora comes after an expedited 11-day search.
"We were very impressed when we interviewed Alex", Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski said in the statement. "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".
Cora's stock rose greatly due to the success of the Astros. He's always in the clubhouse getting to know the players, getting to know which buttons he could push on each player to make them go out there and play the game hard, which is great. "I know that Alex is going to do an excellent job". Cora has received raves for the job he's doing in Houston. They also have a turnkey roster that has won 93 games and a division title in each of the past two seasons and an owner who is willing to spend money to keep the team competitive year after year. This game is meant to be played, have fun. A bilingual speaker, he has been praised for his ability to relate to players of all backgrounds.
Cora is in his first season as A.J. Hinch's bench coach, and has drawn praise for his strong communication skills with players.
Former Detroit Tigers manager Brad Ausmus was one of the Red Sox's other top candidates. He will stay with the Astros until the World Series is over. "One of the brightest baseball intellects that I've ever been around".
He knows Sox second baseman and leader Dustin Pedroia well. And to watch our players respond to him, he's got a lot of respect in that clubhouse because of the work he puts in and the attention to detail that he brings.