Red Sox

‘It’s been a challenge’: Red Sox season has been a grind for Alex Cora

"It’s one of those that you don’t like, but you have to keep going."

Alex Cora
Red Sox manager Alex Cora looks on during the third inning against the Toronto Blue Jays. Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Red Sox manager Alex Cora didn’t mince words when a reporter asked whether this season in particular has been a grind after his team lost 12-4 to the Rays on Sunday.

“Yes,” Cora said, without hesitation. “It gets to a point with the starters where they go short over and over again, very short. It’s one of those…

“We went for it last year, but it’s been a challenge for everybody. It’s one of those that you don’t like but you have to keep going. You have to keep grinding.”

Cora expressed frustration after the Red Sox fumbled an opportunity to sweep one of the teams ahead of them in the American League wild card standings after winning the first two games of their series against the Rays. Nick Pivetta pitched just five innings, allowing eight hits and five runs, while Hirokazu Sawamura and Austin Davis gave up three and four runs respectively in an inning apiece. Both Davis and Sawamura were later designated for assignment.

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Cora lamented how many frustrating games like Sunday’s loss have occurred this season.

“We are in a bad spot. We are,” Cora said. “But we just have to show up tomorrow, win that game, win the series and keep moving forward. For how bad it was today, we accomplished our mission, but when we have chances to sweep people, you have to play better than that. I was a little disappointed for the whole group, including me.

“We’re better than this. We’re a lot better. We showed flashes the last four games have been solid, and then that happens. We can’t have that. It has happened a lot this season, so just have to move forward, hop on a plane and be ready for tomorrow.”

A reporter asked Cora whether his team lacked “killer instinct,” but Cora said he didn’t think that was an issue.

“[Games] just get away, for x or y reason,” Cora said. “Bad defense or we’re short, or we don’t pitch the first five innings. We see too many of those games. It’s always one too many.”

The Red Sox trail the Blue Jays by seven games in the wild card standings with 34 games and one of MLB’s tougher schedules remaining.

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