Astros owner Jim Crane (David Manning-USA TODAY Sports)

Houston Astros first half review: Front Office

The last installment of our first half reviews deals with what has been happening off the field. The Astros have been in the news fairly often — and not always for the best reasons.

The biggest issue continues to be the CSN Houston debacle. Millions of fans in a 5-state area are still completely shut out from being able to view Astros games on TV — even if they are willing to pay for it. The lack of a carriage deal with any of the major satellite or cable TV providers has taken away a part of the fan’s lives that they had grown accustomed to enjoying.

This is an area in which ownership has failed miserably. Many fans have already abandoned the team. Some of those that remain will hold a permanent grudge. Despite all of the court proceedings and efforts to remedy this monumental problem, there appears to be no end in sight. All signs point to a second half of the 2014 season just like the last year-and-a-half — void of TV broadcasts for the majority of Astros fans.

The club got some positive PR when the big Sports Illustrated cover story recently broke. Unfortunately the warm fuzzy feeling of being declared 2017 World Series Champs didn’t last long. The “Ground Control breach” story came right on the heels of the good publicity, resulting in another black eye for the organization.

And, of course, the most recent “off the field” story for the Astros is the ongoing contract negotiations with top draft pick Brady Aiken. Amid accusations of drumming up an elbow injury in order to get Aiken at a discount, the club is running out of time to get a deal done with the 17-year old lefty from San Diego. Overall, it’s been a pretty rough season for the Astros off the field.


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Tags: CSN Houston Houston Astros Jeff Luhnow Jim Crane

  • JR Carroll

    You forget the Aiken deal. If we don’t sign him and lose Nix as well then my grade of the FO is definitely not good. They have done one thing well and that is trade players that we didn’t need for prospects that we can’t make a call on yet. I’ll also say bringing in the Ryan’s was a good move. If the local TV deal isn’t fixed and we screw up the draft we just had over something as trivial as a MRI result that seems to be highly debatable then I would say this season as a whole could be a bust. Springer is fun to watch but batting low .200. Singleton has a ton of talent but is also hovering around .200. We need to spend some money on cloning Altuve a few times before this team is going to succeed. Until then it looks like we’re looking at a top 5 draft pick unless we do the Astros way and trade the entire bullpen again. If we do that then we’re looking at a 4th year in a row 1-1 and that is unacceptable.

    • Greg Thurston

      Thanks for reading. We talked more about the Aiken situation on the podcast. Give it a listen if you have time.

  • 1oldpro

    Please, let’s not forget failure to fix the bullpen, DH, SS, 1B, LF, RF and the bench during the last offseason. You know, the baseball side of baseball. I think that falls under the heading of front office. But they did get us a pitching coach.

    • Kennon Riley

      I really like the emergence of Kike Hernandez as a left fielder. I would like to see him play more shortstop but that probably will not happen until Dexter Fowler returns.