FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Baseball is back, which means the Alex Cora era can finally start for the Red Sox.The first official pitchers/catchers workout will take place on Wednesday at The Fenway South complex in Fort Myers, Fla. The full squad has its first workout on Feb. 19.• Spring Training:Info
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Baseball is back, which means the Alex Cora era can finally start for the Red Sox.
The first official pitchers/catchers workout will take place on Wednesday at The Fenway South complex in Fort Myers, Fla. The full squad has its first workout on Feb. 19.
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However, close to 20 Red Sox players have been working out at the facility on a daily basis for over a week.
Chris Sale, David Price, Jackie Bradley Jr., Rick Porcello and Eduardo Rodriguez are just some of the key players who have been working out.
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There is great anticipation to see how much the Red Sox can thrive under rookie manager Cora, who is known for his boundless enthusiasm and baseball intelligence.
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Cora's imprint will be felt daily starting Wednesday. The Red Sox will play their first Grapefruit League game on Feb. 23 against the Twins. Opening Day is March 29 at Tropicana Field against the Rays. Before that, chemistry needs to be built and fundamentals need to be executed.
How does Cora envision his camp being run?
"I believe in quality work and being efficient," Cora said. "There's going to be short days. There's going to be long days. Short bus rides and long ones. Last year, I was in charge of their situation over there [with the Astros] and [Brian McCann] was very happy that the days were a lot shorter than they were in Atlanta and New York. Hopefully, we get the same thing this year. It has to be quality work. That's the important thing."
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You will see Cora in the trenches working with his infielders and baserunners on fundamentals. You will see him in the cage, reminding his hitters that the 2018 Red Sox are a team that will hunt for pitches to drive early in the count.
The 42-year-old Cora is realizing a dream of managing the Red Sox, the team he won a World Series championship with as a player in 2007.
As a rookie, Cora knows he will have to go through a learning experience, but he has a veteran bench coach in Ron Roenicke to help ease that transition. One thing you'll learn quickly about Cora is that he's confident -- both in his team and himself.
"A winning experience," said Cora. "That's what I want. Every year is a learning experience. If you stop learning, you're going to be out of the game very, very quick. So I'm going to learn, but I want it to be a winning experience."
The Red Sox are coming off back-to-back American League East titles, but also back-to-back ousters in the Division Series. This year's goal is to play deep into October. With a strong outfield of Andrew Benintendi, Bradley and Mookie Betts and a pitching staff led by Sale, Price and Craig Kimbrel, Cora is excited about the team he gets to manage.
"This is a great opportunity," said Cora. "I know the expectations. I know how people feel, but we have to enjoy it. We have to go to work."
Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.