Red Sox

Astros fire manager A.J. Hinch, GM Jeff Luhnow after sign-stealing penalties

Astros fire manager A.J. Hinch, GM Jeff Luhnow after sign-stealing penalties

The Houston Astros have parted ways with their manager and general manager. 

Astros owner Jim Crane announced Monday that manager A.J. Hinch and general manager Jeff Luhnow have been fired. Earlier in the afternoon, Major League Baseball released its findings from the investigation into the Astros stealing opposing teams' signs during their 2017 World Series-winning season. The league also announced Hinch and Luhnow were suspended through the 2020 World Series.

Rather than find a replacement manager and general manager for the upcoming season, the Astros decided to just move in a different direction. It will be interesting to see if the Boston Red Sox take a similar approach with manager Alex Cora.

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Cora, who was Houston's bench coach in 2017, played a key role in the Astros' sign-stealing operation that year, according to the league's report released Monday.

The league noted it won't announce any punishment for Cora until after the investigation into the Red Sox is complete. The 2018 Red Sox also are being investigated by the league for illegally stealing signs. Cora's first year as Red Sox manager was 2018. Boston won the World Series in 2018 after winning 108 regular season games and beating three 100-win opponents in the postseason.

The MLB did not announce a timetable for when the investigation into the Red Sox would be concluded or when or any punishment for Cora would be announced. The Red Sox have not, as of this writing, made any official comment on Monday's developments.

MLB details Cora's role in Astros scandal in new report

Xander Bogaerts offers thoughts on Mookie Betts returning to Red Sox in 2021

Xander Bogaerts offers thoughts on Mookie Betts returning to Red Sox in 2021

The Boston Red Sox made a decision that made a lot of fans unhappy in early February. The team decided to trade Mookie Betts to the Los Angeles Dodgers along with David Price in exchange for a package of three prospects.

Betts, the MLB's MVP back in 2018, is one of the top five players in the league. He hit .295 with 29 homers last year as the Red Sox lead-off hitter, so parting with him obviously stings.

But could the Red Sox try to bring him back in free agency next offseason? It's possible, and it's something that Xander Bogaerts thinks the team could attempt to do.

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“Hey, you know... probably, maybe in a year,” Bogaerts said of potentially getting Betts back in 2021, per Chris Cotillo of MassLive.com. “We’ll see how that goes. He knows what he means to us and we’ll cross that bridge when we get there.”

Of course, there's no guarantee that Betts will end up returning to Boston. He could opt to sign an extension with the Dodgers or he could simply sign with the team that offers him the most money. And given how far apart he and the Red Sox were in negotiations, Betts may simply be out of their preferred price range.

It's tough to prognosticate what will happen in a year. And Betts wasn't willing to give any context clues during his introductory press conference with the Dodgers.

But Bogaerts and the Sox will remain hopeful. And until then, Boston's shortstop had one message for his former teammate.

“Obviously, I wish him nothing but the best," Bogaerts said, per Cotillo. "One of the best teammates I’ve had. One of the best young players we had to wear the Red Sox uniform.

"He’s someone we’re going to miss a lot. It’s not easy to replace somebody like that on and off the field.”

Rob Manfred provides updated timeline for Red Sox sign-stealing investigation

Rob Manfred provides updated timeline for Red Sox sign-stealing investigation

With spring training now here for MLB clubs, the Boston Red Sox have one massive question hanging over their heads. What will be the result of the MLB's investigation into the team's alleged sign-stealing?

Well, on Sunday afternoon, the Sox got an update on when that may be coming thanks to MLB commissioner Rob Manfred.

Manfred has stated that the investigation will likely be wrapped up within the next two weeks, according to Evan Drellich of The Athletic.

It will be interesting to see who the MLB is re-interviewing and what impact that will have on the investigation. But the fact that some developments have "slowed down" the MLB doesn't seem to be good news for the Red Sox.

The sooner the Sox know the results of the investigation, the sooner they can move on from it. And that will be important with the regular season drawing nearer and nearer.