While I was sleeping, and probably while you were sleeping, the Houston Astros hired themselves a new General Manager and it’s not the guy I thought it would be. It’s the guy I thought this organization would never hire. It’s Jeff Luhnow, the Vice President of player procurement from the St. Louis Cardinals.
Houston will have a press conference later today to formally announce Mr. Luhnow, but in the meantime, let’s poke around in his career and see what we can see. Wanna?
Why didn’t I think the Astros would hire this guy? Well, because he’s part of what I consider the “new regime” in baseball. Luhow’s a graduate of the Wharton School of Business. He’s an Ivy League boy. He’s not a part of baseball’s good old boy network.
The Astros have held on to the old ways of baseball and that’s not all bad, but they’ve often sidestepped newer methods of scouting and rating players. With Luhnow as the GM it appears the good old Astros are doing a 180. And it was effective in St. Louis.
Luhow has been with the Cards since 2003 so he knows what it feels like to be a part of a winning organization and to have contributed to those wins. He’s overseen the amateur player draft since 2005 and is the guy responsible for signing players like Jon Jay, Jaime Garcia, Allen Craig and Lance Lynn. Luhnow fits the profile outlined by Jim Crane and George Postolos as what they were looking for in a new General Manager.
“We are very pleased to have Jeff as the new General Manager of the Houston Astros,” Postolos said in a prepared statement. “Jeff is the perfect fit for the Astros because of his track record in scouting and player development during his eight-plus seasons with the Cardinals.”
“The Astros strive to develop one of the best systems in baseball and create a consistent winner at the Major League level. Jeff has the knowledge, skills and experience to lead the baseball operations efforts at all levels and help the Astros achieve this vision. Jeff has a demonstrated the ability to inspire and motivate staff in the front office and out in the field. He was born and raised in Mexico and his bicultural background will be an asset in recruiting players from Latin America and developing the Hispanic market for Los Astros.” via Ultimate Astros
I’m cautiously optimistic this morning. Merry Christmas to me.
There will be a press conference at Minute Maid Park at 1:00pm today to formally introduce Luhnow as the new Astros General Manager. In the meantime, I’ll be comforted by the fact that the Astros HAVE a GM. In Dallas, Dave Gottfried and Bobby Heck will be overseeing the Rule 5 Draft that starts this morning. What will you be doing?
PS. Jeff Luhnow tweets and I love that. You can follow him – @jluhnow
Terri Schlather (AGirlintheSouth) is the tortured Senior Houston Astros Writer for Aerys Sports. You can email her at email@example.com, or follow her ridiculous ramblings on sports, vodka and the weeone on twitter @agirlinthesouth.