Alex Cora is ‘proud’ of Carlos Beltran’s return to baseball

When Carlos Beltran is in the booth at one of the Yankees-Red Sox games this year, he will have one of his biggest supporters in the Boston dugout.

Alex Cora, who returned to manage the Red Sox in 2021 after being suspended for 2020 for his role in the Astros’ sign-stealing program in 2017, which also included Beltran, is pleased his good friend himself will join the Red Sox returns to game this season as YES Network analyst.

“To have him back in the game means the world,” Cora, the Astros’ former bench coach, said Thursday at Yankee Stadium as his team prepared for Opening Day. “As a friend, I wish him the best. I know that the last two years have been very difficult. We’ve had some great conversations and he knows I’m there for him. He knew all along that I was there for him, which is very important. Not just for him, but for [wife] Jessica and the kids. I know how tough the whole process was.

Alex Cora, Carlos Beltran
Alex Cora, Carlos Beltran
Getty, Charles Wenzelberg

“Fair or unfair, we don’t go into that. But the fact that he decided to come back into the game means the world and I’m proud of him.”

Beltran has been out of the game since 2020, when he lost the job he’d just gotten as a Mets manager when the fallout from the Astros scandal was uncovered. MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred pointed to Cora and Beltran as two of the most important minds in the program, and although Beltran avoided the suspension Cora and then-Astros manager AJ Hinch received, it still cost him his job with the Mets.

A year after Cora and Hinch returned as managers, Beltran — the only player mentioned in the MLB report — was hired by YES to edit games in the broadcast booth. His regular-season debut is slated for later this month, though he made waves in his only spring training game on Monday when he appeared to imply the Yankees had signed Aaron Judge for an overtime, which he later corrected.

Cora, who served as ESPN’s MLB commentator from 2013 to 2016, said Beltran didn’t have an easy job.

“I wish him the best,” Cora said. “Hopefully he doesn’t crush me on TV.” Alex Cora is ‘proud’ of Carlos Beltran’s return to baseball


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