by Matt Rooney
Manager of the Year voting is a joke. Voters choose the manager of a team that was more successful than expected rather than looking into what a manager actually did to make the team successful. Bob Melvin (the recipient of the award) was the manager of the team (Oakland A’s) who overachieved. Alex Cora was the reason the Boston Red Sox won the 2018 World Series. This shouldn’t have even been close.
As a first year manager in Boston, Cora led the Red Sox to a franchise best 108 wins and a World Series. This was the most dominant BoSox team in a long, long time. Alex Cora was the reason behind career seasons from JD Martinez, Xander Bogaerts and Mookie Betts, and his connection with Latino players (Rafael Devers, Eduardo Nunez etc.) helped immensely.
Since the first week of Spring Training, the Red Sox were an inspired team. Thank you, Cora. The Red Sox were a prepared team. Thank you, Cora. The Red Sox were a family. Thank you, Cora. The Red Sox are World Series Champions. Thank you, Cora.
“Everything he did worked,” said pitcher Nathan Eovaldi, who’s heroic World Series was made every bit possible by Cora. “He just has a way of making you believe.”
Ace Chris Sale echoed Eovaldi’s praise, “Alex is the man. He’s the best.”
Alex Cora is relatable, and that’s what makes him a great manager. Yes, he is big on analytics. Yes, he knows the game. Yes, he knows how to manage a bullpen and pinch hitters, but the thing that separates him from the pack is that he is extremely relatable and players feel comfortable around him. Cora hasn’t been afraid to show personality throughout the season. He’s not afraid to joke around with players or to admit a mistake he made in-game. He’s not afraid to speak his mind like he did regarding President Trump’s comments on his birthplace Puerto Rico. He’s not afraid, and that’s part of what makes him great.
Earlier this week, it was announced that the Red Sox awarded Cora with a contract extension through 2021.