Astros Rumors: Houston's coaching staff and scouting department are undergoing big changes
With the departure of Dusty Baker, a number of changes were bound to be coming to the coaching staff. New manager Joe Espada isn't new to the Astros whatsoever, but it was inevitable that he was going to want to shape the coaching staff around him to fit his needs (with a healthy amount of input from the front office).
Those changes have already begun as the Astros announced that Omar Lopez had been promoted to bench coach under Espada. Lopez has been a fixture in Houston for the better part of 25 years and was most recently the first base coach the last several season and he was a viable candidate to replace Dusty before the job was given to Espada. The move gives the Astros a familiar and trusted face in an elevated role. Dave Clark, who has extensive minor league managing experience and was the Astros first base coach until 2013, is returning to fill Lopez's spot on the coaching staff.
Those are not the only changes that are coming as the Astros' scouting department took a hit when the Mets stole scouting director Kris Gross away. Given the inconsistency in the Astros' recent draft classes, this could end up being a blessing, but represents yet another key change for an Astros' organization that is very much in transition at the moment.