Yankees' Outfielder Admits He 'Butted Heads' With Red Sox's Alex Cora Last Season

The outfielder was disciplined many times in 2023
Apr 13, 2022; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Boston Red Sox left fielder Alex Verdugo (99) talks with
Apr 13, 2022; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Boston Red Sox left fielder Alex Verdugo (99) talks with / Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports
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Boston Red Sox chief baseball officer Craig Breslow remained relatively quiet in his first offseason at the helm of baseball operations but showed he was not afraid to make a bold move.

It took just a couple months before Breslow dealt one of the Red Sox's core players to the New York Yankees -- outfielder Alex Verdugo.

The 27-year-old had a publicly up-and-down relationship with manager Alex Cora. Verdugo appeared to have dissed his former skipper when talking about being excited to play for Aaron Boone, a manager who has his players' backs. The quote took the Red Sox's fanbase by storm. Verdugo recently expanded on his original messaging.

"I like Boonie a lot. He has just been one of those guys I feel like he’s going to push me but he also has my back," Verdugo told WEEI's Rob Bradford while appearing on the "Baseball Isn't Boring" podcast. "I can have maybe some conversations with him where if he is upset with me not doing something it can be in-house or we just get talked to a little up-close. But really it sucks because I still like AC. I don’t have anything against him. It was how it was handled with us. We started butting heads at the end of it. It happens. It’s part of it. Both of us, we’re competitors. He wanted the most out of me and he wanted the team to win so I understand where a lot of it came from."

There was heavy speculation that there were some issues behind the scenes that ultimately led to the Red Sox dealing Verdugo. While there were other issues such as his impending free agency and lack of fit as one of a plethora of left-handed outfielders -- this certainly aids the initial narrative.

Verdugo also talked about how much occured in his personal life last season, including his grandmother being diagnosed with cancer, eventually passing away and then his mother getting diagnosed with cancer as well. He certainly deserved plenty of slack during that time and was not able to get any in Boston.

Hopefully the fanbase can embrace him when the Yankees head to Fenway Park on June 14.

More MLB: Yankees' Juan Soto Non-Committal About Re-Signing; Would Red Sox Enter Sweepstakes?

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Scott Neville


Scott Neville covers the Boston Red Sox for Sports Illustrated's new page "Inside The Red Sox." Before starting "Inside The Red Sox", Neville attended Merrimack College, where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Communication and Media with a minor in Marketing. Neville spent all four years with Merrimack's radio station WMCK, where he grew as a radio/podcast host and producer.  His propensity for being in front of a microphone eventually expanded to film, where he produced multiple short films alongside his then-roommate and current co-worker Stephen Mottram. On a journey that began as a way to receive easy credits via film classes, he received a call from "It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia" star Charlie Day. Day advised him to make a feature-length film, which he completed his senior year. While writing the film, Neville completed an internship for United Way as part of their NFL Partnership Program. Neville ran the blog for a team of interns and hosted an internet show called "United Way's NFL Partnership Series" where he interviewed NFL alumni. After college Neville wrote for SB Nation's "Over The Monster," a Red Sox sister site of the flagship brand. His work would eventually lead him to a job as a content producer with NESN, where he would cover all sports. After developing as a writer with the top regional network in the world, he was given the opportunity to join the Sports Illustrated Media Group in his current endeavor as the publisher of "Inside The Red Sox." The successful launch and quick rise of "Inside The Red Sox" led to Neville joining the Baseball Essential ownership group, a national baseball site under SIMG. Follow him on Twitter: @ScottNeville46 Email: nevilles@merrimack.edu