Alex Cora would be a great choice to manage the Mets, former Mets outfielder and current Astros DH Carlos Beltran said Tuesday, according to the NY Post.
Cora, 44, is among several candidates reportedly being considered by Sandy Alderson, who said Tuesday that he hopes to begin conducting preliminary interviews as early as this week.
In his first year coaching in professional baseball, Cora is working under Astros manager A.J. Hinch as the team's bench coach. Houston won 101 games this season and will face the Red Sox in the ALDS starting today.
According to Beltran, as bench coach, Cora played a significant role in helping build team chemistry and improving how players communicate with the coaching staff.
Aug 12, 2009; Mets second baseman Alex Cora at Chase Field. Credit: Rick Scuteri-US Presswire
"Alex has been a huge part of this team," Beltran is quoted as saying. "He will be a great manager. He takes a lot of pride in studying the game. He takes a lot of pride into his relationship with the players."
In 14 seasons, Cora played for six teams, including two years with the Mets, while getting the bulk of his playing time at shortstop and second base. He retired in 2012, having hit .243 with a .310 OBP, 828 hits and a .338 slugging percentage. Cora got to the postseason four times and won the World Series with the Red Sox in 2007.
"He's very sharp, he sees the game in an extraordinarily deep way," Houston manager A.J. Hunch said Wednesday. "He has really connected well with players in our clubhouse and spent a lot of time developing relationships and being the bench-coach liaison to the clubhouse that I asked him to be. He's going to manage (some day), whether it's now or later.''
Maggie Wiggin: The Mets need to consider moving quickly on Cora is that they may not get another shot for a long time. His reputation as a leader as a player along with the rave reviews he has received from his well-regarded colleagues in Houston, put him in demand for any one of the handful of MLB manager positions open this offseason.
It would be an edgy choice for the traditional Mets, but they owe it to themselves and their fans to go for the very best. And after a brutal season, it's the kind of big change they need in order to clear the air >> Read more from Maggie on Cora.