Joey Cora Again Shows He’s Horrible Third Base Coach
When the New York Mets hired Joey Cora, the hesitation was that he has been a bad third base coach. In fact, he was so bad the Pittsburgh Pirates fired him mid-season the year prior to the Mets hiring him.
In 2022, he proved he was a poor third base coach. There were a number of flat out bad calls and some embarrassing ones as well. However, at the end of the day, when you win 101 games, people tend not to care about the third base coach. That’s even with the Mets being among the worst in extra bases taken
This season, for the most part, the Mets really haven’t had the base runners or close games for Cora to be all the impactful. However, when those moments arrive, Cora finds a way to make a horrible call.
Now, when you listened to the ESPN broadcast, you were told that Brandon Nimmo was to blame for Jose Trevino picking Nimmo off second. It was the ultimate TOOTBLAN. Getting picked off second with the bases loaded and two outs ending a threat where the game was tied 3-3. Even if Nimmo was really safe, you can’t be in that position.
— MLB Replays (@MLBReplays) June 15, 2023
Now, it looks really bad. Cora holds up Mark Vientos, and Nimmo was well past second base. Lets put aside for a moment that’s a play where Cora normally sends Vientos, but he didn’t there. We can also admit this was an instance where Cora absolutely made the right call. Vientos is not quick, and holding him up at third was the right decision.
Here’s the problem with what transpired. Nimmo hustles more than anyone in baseball, and he is fast. He’s hitting second base while Cora is windmilling Vientos home. It was a very late hold by Cora, and he did it out of the sight line of Nimmo.
Vientos was given the sign to go which Nimmo saw, and he began reading the play. It was when the throw took his eyes into Cora’s sight line that Nimmo held up seeing what was now happening. You’ll note Cora did not follow Nimmo and get into position to ensure he held.
Now, you can certainly blame Nimmo for not checking back on Cora or Vientos. That’s fair, but he’s also there reading a play. Also, he knows Cora’s history. He’s aggressive and sends players at will. Now, for Cora, he knows Nimmo is a very aggressive base runner, and he needs to get in Nimmo’s sight line to ensure he sees the hold.
However, Cora doesn’t judge Vientos’ speed, and he doesn’t take into account Nimmo’s speed and aggressiveness. The end result was a late hold and Nimmo is no-man’s land. Nimmo got the full blame, but he was there because Cora is a bad third base coach.