The consequence of success – well, former success in this case – is the poaching of talent.
The Houston Astros fired their manager, Bo Porter and bench coach, Dave Trembley on Monday after taking three of four from your Texas Rangers. Now, rumor has it, the Houston Astros covet thy neighbor’s coaches.
The rivalry between Dallas and Houston started long ago, but has been intensified recently by the feud between Mark Cuban and Daryl Morey, the Astros butting into the AL West, and the devastating fact that the Astros are … gulp … better than the Rangers.
Firing a manager after a series win and productive month is unusual, but not rare. As most of these things go, manager Bo Porter and General Manager Jeff Lunhow failed to see “eye to eye,” leading to Porter’s ouster.
Players, including a former Ranger, expressed their support for Porter.
"Scott Feldman: “I just got off the phone with Bo. I just called him to thank him— he treated me really well and I’ll always be appreciative” — Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich)"
Now the Houston Astros, led by the Ryan duo and Lunhow, start the search for a new manager to lead them into the promised land of “not terrible.”
Mike Maddux, who was famously recruited to Texas by Nolan Ryan, is credited (along with Ryan) with the rejuvenation of a Texas pitching staff that consistently ranked in the bottom tier of the league. Ryan and Maddux pushed Texas pitchers to go deeper into games, often disregarding pitch counts.
Ron Washington allows Maddux a great deal of latitude during games, prominently influencing pitching changes and in-game decisions. It’s easy to see why the Astros seek a steady pitching hand on the wheel with a multitude of young, elite pitchers working up the system.
Mike Maddux publicly seeks a managerial position and pitched for the Astros in 2000, his last year in the big leagues. Unfortunately, Maddux and the Astros seem to fit together like a puzzle.
If the Astros prefer their managers to be of the analytic variety, Tim Bogar could suit their fancy. A former Red Sox bench coach and Angels AA manager, Bogar is seen by many as an up-and-coming manager-in-waiting.
"“Bo Porter replacement candidate No. 1: Rangers coach Tim Bogar.” — Richard Justice (@richardjustice)"
The Rangers have charged Bogar with the implementation and utilization of shifts during games, which have figured prominently into the 2014 defensive strategy.
Another Astros alum (1997-2000), Bogar also seems to fit Houston’s mold.
Heck, maybe Houston will grab both. The #CurseofNolan strikes again.