Rafael Devers is one of the bright young players in the game, but one facet of his game often seen as an area needing improvement is his defense.

But as far as Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora is concerned, Devers is on his way to becoming an elite third baseman.

Indeed, while Devers has shown his prowess at the plate, he also occasionally has displayed questionable decision-making in the field, poor work with his glove and errant throwing. But those drawbacks have been minimized already this year, and few know or see Devers more than Cora.

And during an appearance on WEEI’s “Dale & Keefe” on Wednesday, Cora explained why he thinks the 21-year-old is on his way to becoming elite in the field.

“A lot of people were worried about Devers at third base. If you see him on a daily basis — Sometimes I joke there’s a tear coming out of my eye. I get emotional when he makes these great plays, just joking around. I’m really proud of what he’s doing,” Cora said. “He’s moving his feet. He’s making right decisions and he’s becoming an elite defender at third base. Before the season a lot of people didn’t think that ‘elite defender’ and ‘Devers’ should be in the same sentence. They would say, ‘You guys are crazy.’ But he’s becoming that player.”

Interesting analysis.

Of course, time will tell as to what Devers’ ceiling at third will be, but it sounds like his manager is confident in that’ll he’s on his way to becoming a true asset in the field.

Thumbnail photo via Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports Images