The writing was on the wall Monday when the 43-year-old was released by the Nationals, but this bit of news is worth passing along anyway.
According to the Montreal Gazette, Matt Stairs has officially retired from the game of baseball.
Stairs, a native of Canada, played for the Expos, Red Sox, A’s, Cubs, Brewers, Pirates, Royals, Rangers, Tigers, Blue Jays, Phillies, Padres and Nats during a 19-year major league career. He will hang up his cleats having posted a .262/.356/.477 lifetime batting line, 265 career home runs, 1,366 career hits and 899 career RBI. The well-traveled veteran also set the MLB record for most pinch-hit homers. All while possessing the body type of a casual softball player.
Stairs will take a bit of time off, but he told reporters that he might be open to coaching in the near future.
Astros bench coach Alex Cora has been described as a leading candidate for multiple managerial openings since the end of the regular season. He has been tied most closely to the Red Sox job, however, having already interviewed with Boston and with several people reporting that he is the Sox’ top choice.
Now come two reports that the job will be given to Cora, possibly as early as this weekend.
The first report comes from NBC Boston’s Evan Drellich, who hears from his sources that “no doubt” it’s Cora, and that the Red Sox are just waiting for the ALCS to end in order to offer it to him. If the Astros are eliminated, it’d certainly happen as soon as Sunday or Monday. If the Astros advance it may be tricker, timing wise, to make a formal introduction since he’d be busy preparing for the World Series, but they could theoretically name him and introduce him later.
A second report came from the Twitter feed for LasMayores.com, MLB’s official Spanish language website. It said today (roughly translated) that “according to several sources [Cora] will be formally presented as manager of the Red Sox after the ALCS ends.” The twist on that: the tweet was deleted a few minutes ago, even though it remained up for several hours. I’d guess that’s likely more due to MLB not wanting any of its official organs to jump the gun than it is based on it being misinformation.
Either way, all signs are pointing to Cora, who played for the Red Sox from 2006-2008, being the next manager in Boston.