Marwin Gonzalez and Alex Cora’s friendship goes back a couple of years, so it certainly wasn’t easy for the Boston Red Sox manager to break the news that Gonzalez was getting designated for assignment.
The move came a few hours prior to the Red Sox’s series opener against the Baltimore Orioles at Fenway Park in order to make room for Kyle Schwarber, who will play in his first game for Boston since being traded.
And even though it was the move Cora and Co. decided was the best one, it still didn’t make it any easier.
“Tough one, obviously,” Cora told reporters over Zoom. “A guy that we liked in the offseason. Versatile. Didn’t happen offensively for us. That’s part of the business, right? You’ve got to make tough decisions.
“He was outstanding in the clubhouse. Outstanding in the dugout. It was a grind for him, physically, throughout. But early in the season, his versatility and the way he played defense helped us win ball games.”
The decision was tough, sure, but Cora revealed his conversation with Gonzalez was “an easy one.”
“It was an easy one. He knows me, its part of me the business,” Cora said. “The personal side of it is the personal side of it. He knows I still care about him, I know he cares about me. But at the same time I care about a lot of people. It’s part of the business. And as a group we decided that that was the move. It was tough on, obviously, not only for me but for the people that got to know him. But we felt like at this moment it made sense to do this and (we) wish him nothing but the best. We’ll see where it takes him in the upcoming days.”
Gonzalez did show versatility on defense, but his offense became troublesome to the Red Sox, as he hit just two home runs and posted a .202 average and .567 OPS.