Why Jon Lester Isn’t Surprised By Alex Cora’s Success As First-Year Manager

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Boston Red Sox pitcher Alex Cora

Photo via Peter G. Aiken/USA TODAY Sports

Jon Lester and Alex Cora won a World Series together with the Boston Red Sox in 2007.

Fast forward just over a decade: Lester has become one of the best pitchers in baseball, while Cora is beginning to make a name for himself in another facet of the game.

Cora has exceeded expectations and then some in his first year managing the Red Sox, who sit at a Major League Baseball-best 68-30 at the All-Star break. While it would have been tough to imagine Cora and the Sox thriving as much as they have, Lester isn’t all too surprised by his former teammate’s success at the helm.

“Back then, he was a manager,” Lester said, per MassLive’s Chris Cotillo. “He was a guy that was your bench guy. Obviously in the American League, your bench guy is a little bit different than in the National League. He basically, and I don’t want to take anything away from Tito (Terry Francona), but he ran the bench.”

Lester continued: “Helping position players out, talking with guys, whatever needed to be done,” Lester said. “Getting on guys for not running hard or whatever. He was kind of that guy. I think people saw early on. I saw early on my career that this guy could potentially be a manager and do a good job.”

Who knows, maybe Lester will reunite with Cora in October for a World Series battle between the Chicago Cubs and the Red Sox.

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