All Things Astros and a whole lot more
It’s time now for another episode of your story: As the Astros’ Turn.
Geez, can we all just talk some baseball? Whether or not Carter should be hitting third or fourth? Who should have pitched the ninth? Who should be called up Monday? Whether the team will non-tender this guy or extend that guy?
The discussion of how the team has improved and could be looking at an 18-20 game improvement over 2013 regularly is regularly drowned out by the latest leak, rumor, communique or whisper of a “he said, she said”. Which seems to always end up dying down with a pass-the-buck “no comment” or “I don’t know, talk to him” or “I was there, but I wasn’t listening” or “yes, we’re all in this together” unofficial/official statement.
It’s time for the Houston Astros to grow up. The honeymoon is over. So is the crawling stage.
Fans and other onlookers were fine in 2012 and even 2013 watching a rebuilding organization bumbling along and were even tolerant of mistakes from a first-time owner, first-time general manager, first-time manager, first-time major league players, first-time fans, first-time front office staff and first-time AL team.
Now, it’s time for the Astros to just grow up. Would someone please step up to the plate, take charge and drive the boat?
Why do these persistent rumors, innuendo and gossip-like reports, well, persist? Can it be that there is no one at the helm? That there are too many silos within the organization? That management isn’t on the same page?
Geez. Most of this could be stopped if someone would be a little more transparent and not leave all the speculation to the media, enemies, disgruntled employees and distant sportswriters.
It’s just time for the Astros to grow up!
All the discussion over Luhnow’s tandem pitching, Porter’s lineups and bullpen decisions and scrubs, AAAA players and winter speculation is moot if — IF — management is pulling in different directions.
Where is Nolan Ryan in the loop? Is Craig Biggio part of the discussion? These guys are advisers, no? Too often in 2014, we’ve had to use phrases like “damage control”, “blunders”, “fiasco” and now we’re turning to “rift”, “heated” and “tension”.
Ken Rosenthal, who started the latest reporting of the internal skirmish (oh, there’s another word), wrote: “it’s difficult to imagine the Astros starting the 2015 season with the same management team.”
Think I’ve mentioned this before, but it’s time for the Astros to just grow up.
So, if anyone is leaving, who’s the odd man out? Jim Crane ain’t going anywhere, so you can forget that. As I’ve suggested before, it’s unlikely Jeff Luhnow is leaving since he’s hired virtually the entire front office and his firing would result in another dozen or so departures and foretell another starting over process.
If there is a change, the most likely to exit is Bo Porter. And, yes, it’s the cheapest way out for the Astros and would cause the least ripple effect on the organization.
The biggest admission for an organization that has endured countless PR debacles and continued mistrust among fans, the media and others is that it can’t seem to get the right team in place. Can someone say synergy?
Still, this is Crane’s organization. This is Luhnow’s team. Houston has sent dozens of long-time employees packing and has hired virtually everyone one from top to bottom now. When you look at the Astros’ staff, few have been part of the organization longer than 3 years. How many names do you recognize?
So the question no longer seems “should the Astros do something”, but “what should the Astros do?” Before the Astros reach respectability on the field, the Astros will need to restore reputation and integrity, both inside and outside the organization.
And that will require some growing up. Jim, pull the trigger.
So what say you?