Alex Cora is returning to Boston.
Cora and the team agreed to part ways in January due to his role in the Astros’ cheating scandal. He was later suspended for the 2020 season, allowing him to return to baseball in 2021.
The Red Sox contacted Cora multiple times when his suspension ended with chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom and general manager Brian O’Halloran, Speier reported.
Phillies integrative baseball performance director Sam Fuld and Marlins bench coach James Rowson were reportedly the other finalists for the job. The team interviewed nearly 10 candidates for the role, which was left vacant after the Red Sox fired Ron Roenicke after one season.
Cora had immediate success in Boston in his first tenure as Red Sox manager. He led the club to a franchise-record 108 wins in the regular season before winning the World Series in 2018. Year two didn’t go as well. The Red Sox went 84-78, missing the playoffs for the first time since 2015.
News broke after the 2019 season of the Astros’ scheme to steal signs during their 2017 World Series-winning season. Cora, who was the bench coach for that squad, played a key role in the team’s attempts of stealing signs by using video cameras to catch signals and relay them to hitters by banging a trash can, the MLB’s investigation found.
Cora wasn’t immediately punished by MLB after it completed its investigation of the Astros in January because it investigated the Red Sox for rules violations in 2018. MLB’s investigation of the Red Sox cleared Cora of any wrongdoing during the 2018 season.
Cora received a one-year suspension as a result of MLB’s findings of the 2017 Astros, which was the same suspension former Astros manager A.J. Hinch received. Hinch was hired by the Detroit Tigers to be their next manager last week.