Alex Cora: 'Very surprised' Sox Skipped Funeral
Aug/24/12 10:26 AM Filed in: Alex Cora
Former Red Sox infielder Alex Cora joined Kirk Minihane and Rob Bradford Thursday to express his surprise that only four Red Sox attended the funeral of Johnny Pesky on Monday.
"I was very surprised," Cora said. "I think what Johnny means and meant to the players and the people in Boston, he was more than just a people person. Just walking into that clubhouse and seeing Johnny smile and greeting you in there and talking about baseball and life in general, he meant a lot, especially to a lot of people in there. I was very surprised to hear that only four players showed up to the funeral."
The Red Sox had rented buses to take players and staff from Fenway to the church in Swampscott on Monday -- an off-day -- but the player turnout was limited to just David Ortiz, Clay Buchholz, Vicente Padilla and Jarrod Saltalamacchia. Cora said that if he were on the team, he wouldn't have needed someone to tell him to attend the funeral because it would be obvious that he needed to go.
"I don't think somebody has to say it," he said. "I think everybody understands what he means to the organization. There are certain things that go beyond an off day. This is a situation that nobody wanted, but it happened. As a person, you've got to put yourself not as a baseball player, but as a person. Your family understands that there's something big going on. … I understand that it's been a tough season, a lot of things have happened, but just a few hours of your day off to pay respects to Johnny, I don't think it's going to hurt anybody.
"For me personally, if I was in that situation, there's a pretty good chance that nobody would have had to tell me, 'You have to go,'" Cora said. "You take matters into your own hands and do what is right, and that was the right thing to do."