Getting to know Astros' manager Bo Porter
Ask new Astros manager Bo Porter about his team and his thoughts turn to the Washington Nationals, circa 2009 or 2010.
“I was lucky enough and blessed enough to go through that maturation with the Washington Nationals,” Porter said at FanFest Saturday. “And a lot of people outside of the Washington Nationals organization, they didn’t know Ian Desmond. They didn’t know Danny Espinosa, they didn’t know Tyler Moore, they didn’t know Craig Stamen, Steve Lombardozzi.”
Those players grew to be a big part of the core of the Nationals team that won the National League East last season. Porter sees parallels between those teams and the Astros he’ll head to Spring Training with.
“We look at the players we have in our organization and we believe we have high quality Major League players that a lot of people just don’t know about,” Porter said. “But when you look at the Houston Astros today, and when you look at where the Washington Nationals were at three years ago there are a lot of similarities. My experience in Washington will definitely help here in Houston.“
When Houston was looking for a new manager after the 2012 season, Porter found kindred spirits in what it would take to rebuild the Astros into winners.
“There’s only 30 of these jobs, but at the same time I was kind of blessed enough to be in the situation that I had options and this was definitely my first choice,” Porter said. “But when I sat down with (owner) Jim (Crane) and GM Jeff (Luhnow) and (Astros President) George (Postolos) and the rest of the Houston Astros decision making team, it was evident when we were on one sheet of music.”
It’s not just Porter that sees positive changes in the Astros organization,
Even though the team amassed more than 100 losses in each of the past two seasons, there are positive signs of progress. The team is identifying the core of players that Porter believes will help the Astros become a model franchise again. As he found out on the Astros CAREavan and FanFest, Porter knows he’s not alone.
“I think (Astros fans) are starting to see a lot of the things they wanted to see,” Porter said. “From Jim Crane to Jeff Luhnow to the hiring of me as the manager, there has been a lot of change taking place throughout the organization. I think the fan base has started to be able to ask questions and get answers to what is the strategic plan. We’re able to answer those questions on a daily basis.”