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SBD/September 2, 2014/Franchises
Published September 2, 2014
ASTROS' UNREST: In Houston, Jerome Solomon writes the Astros fired manager Bo Porter less than two full seasons into his tenure, raising the question, "Why was he hired in the first place?" Also, can GM Jeff Luhnow be "trusted to make the right hire this time?" Luhnow in hiring Porter "messed up his first major decision on the job." There was an "easily observable personality conflict between Porter and Luhnow," so Astros Owner Jim Crane "had to choose one or the other." The "wise move, or the least painful one, for a franchise that is only a couple of years into converting from its old-school way of doing business to a modern operation, was to stick with Luhnow." Now Luhnow "has to do better" (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 9/2).
GAME MANAGERS: In San Diego, Kevin Acee wrote "we should be happy that Padres President Mike Dee brought in" new GM A.J. Preller -- "a guy who has been a part of building a winning team and has rubbed some people the wrong way while doing so." Hopefully, Dee "allows Preller to rub him the wrong way. ... But until the Padres start winning on at least a semi-regular basis, Dee could use a different kind of help." Dee "needs someone to tell him when he might be acting not in the best interest of the team, the fans or himself, how what he does might be perceived, why he might want to say (or not say) certain things a certain way" (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 9/1).
INDY TECHIES: In Indianapolis, Phil Richards wrote the Colts "are plugged in," as the team's front office is now one of five in the NFL with "Verizon-enabled iPads." The Colts also are one of 13 teams "contracted with Melbourne, Australia-based Catapult Sports, whose data tracking system provides immediate feedback on every player on every play of every practice: distance covered, speed, acceleration, starts, stops, change of direction, force of impact, as many as 100 aspects of player movement and exertion" (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 8/31).