Hours before their final game of the season, the Boston Red Sox announced on Sunday that Ron Roenicke would not be returning as manager in 2021.
Roenicke, 64, was elevated from bench coach last offseason when Alex Cora was let go due to his role in the 2017 Houston Astros sign-stealing scandal. Cora was subsequently suspended for the 2020 season.
Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom released a statement about the team’s decision to move on from Roenicke.
“Throughout this difficult season, Ron’s consistency and professionalism kept the environment in our clubhouse productive and gave all of our players room to grow and develop. While we believe that, moving forward, we will benefit from new leadership and new energy, that does not diminish how strongly we feel about Ron. He is a man of the highest character who cares about our players and the Red Sox organization. As bench coach, he helped this team win a world championship. As manager, he showed poise and leadership in navigating an extremely challenging year. We are grateful for all of his contributions in our uniform.”
With the trade of Mookie Betts to the Los Angeles Dodgers and ace Chris Sale sidelined after Tommy John surgery, not much was expected of Roenicke, and he delivered. At 23-36 the Red Sox have one of the worst records in baseball. Compared to the 2018 team that won the World Series, the team on the field in 2020 hadn’t changed too much, but was almost unrecognizable.
Could Alex Cora return to manage in 2021?
It wasn’t entirely unexpected that Roenicke was let go on Sunday. He was a lame duck from the start, never expected to be more than a bandage on a bad managerial situation.
With the Red Sox immediately beginning their search for a new manager, one name has already risen to the top: Alex Cora, whose suspension will be over at the end of the 2020 season.
From the moment Alex Cora and the Red Sox parted ways, there was speculation that he would return as manager in 2021. Cora’s suspension concludes at the end of the 2020 World Series.— Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) September 27, 2020
It’s entirely possible that we could see a reunion between Cora and the Red Sox in the coming months.
More from Yahoo Sports: