Looking Back and Looking Forward – Evaluating the Houston Astros

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Looking Back & Looking Forward

May 2, 2015; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow waves to the crowd before a game against the Seattle Mariners at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Since his hiring in December of 2011, Jeff Luhnow has preached trusting the process. You know, the #Process. He inherited the worst team in baseball and gave up Drayton McLane’s dogged pursuit of mediocrity, turning in the two worst seasons in franchise history in 2012 and 2013 while stockpiling assets for the future.

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In 2015, the first wave of the future arrived. Combined with some shrewd signings (Luke Gregerson, Colby Rasmus) and waiver claims (Will Harris, Collin McHugh), the Astros put out an above-average team. Its flaws — low-velocity relievers and undisciplined, exploitable sluggers — were predictably more of an issue in September and October than in May and June.

As we look to take the next step, I have broken down three encouraging things that went right in 2015 and three more that need to happen for sustained success in 2016.

Next: 2015: What Went Right