Red Sox

Alex Cora delivers rebuke to those who believe Red Sox clubhouse is divided over White House visit

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Alex Cora delivers rebuke to those who believe Red Sox clubhouse is divided over White House visit

Alex Cora sounds like he's had enough after a week of think pieces using his team to symbolize the various breakdowns in American society.

After the 2-1 victory over the Orioles on Wednesday, but before the team's Thursday visit to the White House, Cora let reporters know how much it has bothered him to hear his clubhouse described as divided.

With the White House trip being made almost exclusively by white players and the list of those skipping limited to players of color (as well as Cora himself), the manager clearly didn't appreciate the implication that the team was fractured. 

So, he sounded defiant when he spoke to reporters after his team pulled back to .500 for the first time since the second game of the season.

"Amazing. Amazing," he said. "You know, like this was very gratifying today. There's been a lot of talk about what's going on tomorrow, the clubhouse being divided, race, politics, whatever. Those kids went out there and they played their heart out. We know who we are in the clubhouse. We know a lot of people doubt that. But like last year, we cancel the noise, we show up every day, and we play. I was watching the game, and I was like, 'You know what, yeah.' It was cool. For everybody that's talking about us, the situation, crushing us throughout the week, well, they played extra innings. They didn't give in."

The game was saved twice, first by Jackie Bradley Jr. with a jaw-dropping leap over the center field fence to rob Trey Mancini of a walk-off homer in the 11th, and then by Heath Hembree, who struck out the side in the 12th.

Bradley is one of the players who won't be visiting the White House. Hembree is an outspoken supporter of President Trump, a fact clearly not lost on Cora.

"You see them in the clubhouse, they're celebrating Heath because of the first save, they're celebrating Jackie, and now, we go," Cora said. "There's a group that's going home, and there's a group going to the White House. And on Friday, we get back – get back to playing baseball."

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MLB Rumors: Yankees prepared to offer Gerrit Cole record-setting deal

MLB Rumors: Yankees prepared to offer Gerrit Cole record-setting deal

Brace yourselves, Red Sox fans. The New York Yankees appear to be all-in on Gerrit Cole.

Cole, the premier free-agent pitcher on the market, is the Yankees' top offseason priority according to ESPN's Jeff Passan. Passan notes ownership has given the go-ahead to offer the right-hander a record-setting deal.

If the Yankees hope to sign Cole, however, they'll have to win a bidding war against both Los Angeles clubs.

Passan writes:

New York and the Los Angeles Angels, a team similarly smitten with Cole and in even greater need of pitching than the Yankees, are preparing for a bidding war that executives expect will reach well beyond $250 million, according to sources. The Los Angeles Dodgers' interest in Cole is acute as well, though they are also considering bids for right-hander Stephen Strasburg and third baseman Anthony Rendon, sources said.

So yeah, Cole is going to make a pretty penny. And it's well-deserved. The 29-year-old went 20-5 with a 2.50 ERA last season for the Houston Astros and finished as the runner-up for the American League Cy Young award.

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Ex-Red Sox catcher Sandy Leon thanks fans, organization in heartfelt post

Ex-Red Sox catcher Sandy Leon thanks fans, organization in heartfelt post

The Sandy Leon era in Boston is over, but the catcher clearly is thankful for the five years he spent with the Red Sox.

Leon, who was traded to the Cleveland Indians on Monday for a minor league pitcher, posted a message on Instagram thanking Red Sox fans and the organization.

Here's what he wrote:

Today, I thank God for everything he allowed me to live these past five years. They were filled with unimaginable joy for me and my family. I want to thank the @redsox for giving me the opportunity to be a part of their organization. You were an extended family during that time. Thank you for being a part of my career. I will live in appreciation of the team. I also want to thank the Boston fans. You guys are the best! Thank you for every encouraging word during each game. Thank you for showing what true passion for a club is. Today, I am convinced that everything I learned and lived during my time with the @redsox will be fundamental for whatever God has in store for me with the @indians Thank you Red Sox and Red Sox fans. Eternally grateful. 🙌🏻

Check out the post below:

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Hoy quiero darle gracias a Dios por todo lo que me ha permitido vivir en estos últimos 5 años, los cuales han sido llenos de cosas inimaginables para mi familia y para mi. Quiero darle gracias a los @redsox por haberme dado la oportunidad de ser parte de su organización. Fueron como una familia extendida. Les agradezco haber sido parte de mi carrera. Viviré agradecido de ustedes. También quiero dar gracias muy especiales a los fanáticos de Boston ¡SON LOS MEJORES! Gracias por cada palabra de aliento en cada partido. Gracias por mostrarme cómo se puede amar a un equipo. Hoy estoy convencido que todo lo aprendido y vivido en los @redsox será fundamental para lo que Dios me permita vivir en los próximos años con los @indians GRACIAS POR TODO @redsox GRACIAS REDSOX FANS. Eternamente agradecido. 🙌🏻🙌🏻 • • • Today, I thank God for everything he allowed me to live these past five years. They were filled with unimaginable joy for me and my family. I want to thank the @redsox for giving me the opportunity to be a part of their organization. You were an extended family during that time. Thank you for being a part of my career. I will live in appreciation of the team. I also want to thank the Boston fans. You guys are the best! Thank you for every encouraging word during each game. Thank you for showing what true passion for a club is. Today, I am convinced that everything I learned and lived during my time with the @redsox will be fundamental for whatever God has in store for me with the @indians Thank you Red Sox and Red Sox fans. Eternally grateful. 🙌🏻

A post shared by Sandy Leon (@sandyleon41) on

Leon didn't exactly strike fear in opposing pitchers during his time in Boston, but he did serve as a trusted battery mate for several Red Sox pitchers. Chris Sale and Rick Porcello, in particular, preferred the Venezuela native as their go-to backstop.

With Leon off the roster, that leaves Christian Vazquez as the lone catcher currently on the Red Sox depth chart.

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