Red Sox

Alomar yet to hear from Sox as GM meetings begin

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Alomar yet to hear from Sox as GM meetings begin

MILWAUKEE -- Even as the Red Sox begin to turn their attention to a roster makeover for 2012, they have some unfinished business as the general manager meetings get underway here at the Pfister Hotel.

Red Sox GM Ben Cherington, who is arriving later Monday night, seems to be honing in on a choice for his new manager.

Dale Sveum has already been told that he will get a second interview with the Red Sox and an opportunity to meet with principal owner John Henry and team chairman Tom Werner Wednesday.

Henry and Werner are due here Wednesday, when the meetings morph from GMs to owners. None of the candidates interviewed in the first round met with Henry or Werner in person, though they all spoke with team CEO Larry Lucchino.

Reached Monday afternoon, Sandy Alomar Jr. said he had yet to hear back from the Sox on a possible second interview. Alomar, like Sveum, is also a candidate for the Chicago Cubs' managerial opening.

Cherington has repeatedly said that he would prefer to have a manager in place by Thanksgiving, which falls on Nov. 24. That would seem to lead to the Sox making a decision by the end of the week, or on the weekend, with an introductory press conference early next week.

Doug Melvin, the Milwaukee Brewers general manager, has had Sveum on his staff for the past six seasons and believes Sveum is ready to manage.

"He's very conscientious," said Melvin. "He's very passionate about the game. He sees the game from different angles. He's been a hitting coach, a third-base coach, a bench coach . . . He's experienced in all those areas. Dealing with people, I think he'll be brutally honest. Dealing with players, I think he'll let them know what's expected of him.

"He's a competitor. He wants to win. He was on those Brewers' teams in the early '80s and they had that competitive spirit. Same with those Red Sox teams he coached."

Melvin installed Sveum as his interim manager at the end of the 2008 season, having him take over for Ned Yost with 12 games left on the schedule.

"People ask me why I didn't hire him (to become permanent manager)," said Melvin. "We just felt we wanted to go outside the organization and I'm not a big believer in making an interim guy the full-time guy. We wanted a different voice. But I think Dale has been through enough that he'd be ready to take over and do the job now."

Astros beat Yankees in Game 7 to advance to World Series, 4-0

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Astros beat Yankees in Game 7 to advance to World Series, 4-0

HOUSTON - Charlie Morton and Lance McCullers combined on a three-hitter, Jose Altuve and Evan Gattis homered and the Houston Astros reached the World Series, blanking the New York Yankees 4-0 Saturday night in Game 7 of the AL Championship Series.

Just four years removed from their third straight 100-loss season in 2013, the Astros shut down the Yankees for two straight games after dropping three in a row in the Bronx.

Next up for the Astros: Game 1 of the World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Tuesday night. Houston aces Dallas Keuchel and ALCS MVP Justin Verlander will have plenty of rest, too, before the matchup begins at Dodger Stadium.

Houston has never won even a single World Series game. The only previous time the Astros made it this far, they were a National League team when they were swept by the Chicago White Sox in 2005.

Now, manager A.J. Hinch's club has a chance to win that elusive first title, while trying to boost a region still recovering from Hurricane Harvey.

Houston improved to 6-0 at Minute Maid Park in these playoffs and became the fifth team in major league history to win a seven-game postseason series by winning all four of its home games.

Morton bounced back from a loss in Game 3 to allow two hits over five scoreless innings. Starter-turned-postseason reliever McCullers limited the Yankees to just one hit while fanning six over the next four.

Combined, they throttled the Yankees one last time in Houston. Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez and their New York teammates totaled just three runs in the four road games.

CC Sabathia entered the game 10-0 with a 1.69 ERA in 13 starts this season after a Yankees loss. But he struggled with command and was gone with one out in the fourth inning.

Houston was up 2-0 in fifth when former Yankees star Brian McCann came through for the second straight game by hitting a two-run double after snapping an 0-for-20 skid with an ground-rule RBI double to give Houston its first run on Friday night.

The Yankees, trying to reach the World Series for the first time since 2009, lost an elimination game for the first time this season after winning their first four in these playoffs. New York struggled on the road this postseason, with this loss dropping the team to 1-6.

Red Sox reportedly make offer to Cora

Red Sox reportedly make offer to Cora

UPDATE: The deal is for three years, per Ken Rosenthal.

BOSTON — We’re just waiting on an announcement now.

A pair of national reports on Saturday afternoon, one from FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal... 

...And another from MLB Network and FanRagSports.com's Jon Heyman...

have firmed up Alex Cora’s expected hiring as Red Sox manager. Both reported that Cora, the Astros bench coach, is expected to take the job once Houston's season ends, which could come as soon as Saturday night after Game 7 of the American League Championship Series. 

Heyman reported a contract offer has already been made to Cora. 

A baseball source said this week that there was “not a doubt” Cora, the Astros bench coach, would wind up with the Red Sox gig. It’s unclear when exactly the offer was made to him, but one had not been made as of midday Wednesday, the source said. 

Cora, 41, a former Red Sox infielder (2005-08) who's also worked in the media and is the most sought-after managerial candidate at the moment, appeared the front-runner since the outset of what proved a small search for the Red Sox.

Earlier, Boston Globe reported that the Washington Nationals were interested in Cora after they fired Dusty Baker on Friday.