The World Series that produced new baseball fans and gave baseball the best PR in a few years, just saw a decision that brings back some painful memories. A few hours ago, one of the managers that was implicated in the sign stealing scandals over the past few seasons was hired for the same position. No, I am not talking about A. J. Hinch, which was a surprise. Alex Cora was re-hired as the manager for the Boston Red Sox. The only question that matters: Did the Red Sox get this hire correct?
My initial reaction to the re-hiring of Cora was that it was stupid. From a PR perspective, you brought back the problem you just got rid of. A man associated with one of the more controversial scandals in recent baseball history. However, after letting it stir and thinking about what to write about, I am not entirely sure it is terrible. I was watching some of the coverage on ESPN about the decision and they had the guys on PTI discuss this. One point that was made was that Cora “did the time for the crime”. He served his punishment, made the attempt to be hired again, and the Red Sox decided to take another chance on him. In terms of what how we live our everyday lives, that is all many of us ask for, a second chance. On the other hand, many of us do not create such a problem to give our businesses such bad PR that it can negatively impact its operation, potentially, for years to come. Despite the controversy, the Red Sox also won a World Series with Cora at the helm, and as is always true in sports: winning cures everything.
The team is vastly different than the one Cora managed two years ago. Mookie Betts and David Price are gone. Chris Sale is recovering from Tommy John surgery, and the Red Sox need to make decisions on re-signing free agents that will show whether they are going to be buyers or sellers pretty early on. While I still have mixed feelings on the decision, I do believe that the punishment was never going to be and probably was not deserving of any type of ban. I do believe that the league will need to continue to keep on eye on Hinch and Cora as well as the rest of the league to ensure that type of practice does not occur again. Whether or not the Red Sox made the right call though? That answer will come by the 2023-2024 seasons as that is when many of the contracts of their star players will have elapsed.
In terms of how this impacts sports betting, according to NBC Sports, the Red Sox were +8000 odds to win the World Series on October 28th, which was 22nd on the list of World Series favorites. Now, after the hire, William Hill has the Red Sox at +5000 to win the Fall Classic. Cora certainly brings that winning feeling to the sportsbooks as well.
Featured Image Via: Fox News
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