Baseball's newest cheating scandal has just felled it second big-name manager of the week. The Boston Red Sox say they've "parted ways" with Alex Cora, who led the team to a World Series in 2018, reports the Boston Herald. It was seen as a preemptive strike because Cora was likely about to be suspended for a year by the league. The move comes after MLB suspended the manager and general manager of the Houston Astros for using technology to steal signs from opposing teams. The connection? Cora served as a bench coach for the Astros in 2017, the year that team won the World Series, and an MLB report mentions him 11 times and says he "originated and executed" the Astros' sign-stealing scheme, per the AP.
"It has been a sad two days for the sport—but a necessary two days, lest further sign-stealing scandals erupt into a full-blown, steroids-like melodrama that engulfs the entire sport for years," writes David Schoenfield at ESPN. Schoenfield's analysis notes that old-fashioned sign-stealing has long been a staple of the game, and Cora had a reputation of being adept at it. But the new controversy suggests Cora took it way too far, using electronic technology to steal signs so they could be relayed to batters in real time. The latter was done through banging from the dugout, as this video explains. (Read more Major League Baseball stories.)