When the 2017 season ended for the Boston Red Sox, there was a lot of uncertainty surrounding their manager John Farrell. They didn’t know if he was the right guy to lead this team to where they think they belong — representing the American League in the World Series. When Dave Dombrowski was hired, he was given John Farrell, he did not hire him himself. So when Dombrowski had the opportunity to bring in his own man, he took the opportunity and ran with it.
The Boston Red Sox fired John Farrell on Oct. 11, and they took no time in finding his replacement. They officially hired Alex Cora on Oct, 23. Not only will the Red Sox be getting a new manager, but they will also be getting a whole new coaching staff as well.
With hitting coach Chili Davis and third-base/infield Brian Butterfield both departing for the Chicago Cubs and pitching coach Carl Willis leaving for the Cleveland Indians to take the same job, how different is this team going to look next year? The only coaches still on the staff returning from last year are bullpen coach Dana Levangie and assistant hitting coach Victor Rodriguez.
Maybe this could be a blessing in disguise for the Red Sox. If you look into the successes of the coaching staff, the only one Red Sox fans may truly lose sleep over is Chili Davis. Carl Willis was gifted with one of the best pitching staffs in all of baseball, and all he got out of it was a lot of inconsistencies. Chris Sale is a dominant pitcher, and would be good regardless of who the coach was. Under Willis, Sale had one of the worst turnarounds from a Cy Young winner, and starting pitchers who continuously showed the inability to bring it day in and day out.
Brain Butterfield was a good coach, but he had many mistakes. In the ALDS against Houston, if Mitch Moreland is rounding third, and the outfielder is just touching the ball, there is no reason why Moreland should be sent home. Yet, there goes Butterfield waving Moreland in, and he was out by a mile. The Red Sox’s base running was also terrible.
One thing that the Red Sox will definitely miss is the chemistry that Davis had with the Red Sox hitters. Davis was the one who was responsible for getting Mookie Betts out of his slump. He knew all of his hitter’s swings like the back of his hand, so Cora is going to have to bring in someone who not only can be a good hitting coach, but also one who can connect with his players just like Davis did.
Cora is the new man to lead the Red Sox. He is going to need to bring in virtually a whole new staff and create a new attitude in the clubhouse, and generate some positivity, clearly something that Joh Farrell struggled with. Alex Cora and his new staff have a lot of work to do if they want to live up to the lofty expectations that Bostonians have for all of their teams.