You shouldn't need proof, but when Alex Cora became the first Puerto Rican manager to win the World Series last fall, he left no doubt minorities could succeed in MLB's managing ranks.
But the Boston Red Sox manager still says his nationality worked against him when he began looking for coaching jobs.
In a recent interview with Sportsnet's Shi Davidi, Cora said his interview process with most MLB teams was positive before the Red Sox hired him as their manager in November 2017.
"In my experience, I interviewed with Texas, San Diego, Arizona, the Mets, Detroit -- last year with three -- I never felt I was interviewed because I was a minority," Cora told Davidi. "I always thought that I had a chance. The people that run those organizations stayed in touch with me and were very supportive, so I appreciated that."
There was one outlier, though, and it still rubs Cora the wrong way.
"There was one organization that interviewed me for another job and I felt it, they just interviewed me because I was a minority," Cora said. "It felt like s---. I was like, ‘F--- this s---.' "
The MLB has its own version of the NFL's "Rooney Rule" -- dubbed the "Selig Rule" after former MLB commissioner Bud Selig -- which requires teams to interview at least one minority candidate for every managerial or front office opening. But while the rule helped Cora land an interview, he apparently felt like the club was just checking a box.
Cora felt his brother was a victim of the rule, as well. Cora said he remembers Joey Cora, an 11-year MLB veteran and current Pittsburgh Pirates third base coach, being interviewed by an MLB team that didn't know where he went to college.
"I’m like, how did you not know he went to Vanderbilt?” Cora said. “When organizations start looking at us as capable and they interview you because you’re capable, not a minority, it’s going to start happening."
Cora, who certainly proved he was capable in 2018, will face one of MLB's three other Puerto Rican managers Tuesday in Toronto Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo. And while the AL East foes will play each other 19 times this season, Cora fully supports his fellow Puerto Rico native.
"There’s a reason the Blue Jays liked Charlie Montoyo, there’s a reason he got the job -- he went to that room and impressed everybody," Cora said.
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