Making Sense of Houston Astros GM Jeff Luhnow
The scene is every Major League Baseball clubhouse. The time is July and as the end of the month approaches, trades hover over the post-game buffet like a superb crop dusting effort from Carlos Lee. A general manager calls one his players into his office, sits him down and the following conversation takes place.
GM: Listen, I’m going to give it to you straight, we’ve dealt you to Houston. Appreciate all you’ve done, you’ve got a great career ahead of you if you work hard and we wish you all the best.
Player: The Astros? Son of a…guess I’ll get a few more AB’s.
GM: Here’s Jeff Luhnow, he’s your new GM.
Astros GM Jeff Luhnow: Hey (it doesn’t matter what his name is, Luhnow only sees ballplayers in code. He’s like Neo but capable of using words with more than one syllable), we’re real excited to bring you in. We’re rebuilding and think you’re a piece that could….
Player: Jeff, what was that? Did I lose you?
Luhnow: We’re trading you.
Player: Hell, alright. Where?
Luhnow: I’ve mapped out three deals during this phone call. I’ve already duped the Marlins into a disinterested Carlos Lee, the White Sox into a pitcher I converted to the bullpen for this purpose alone and will find someone to salvage the sinking ship that is Wandy Rodriguez. Everyone on my roster except for the shorty at second is available and we’re headed for the first pick overall in next year’s draft. Is there anything this maestro can’t do?
Player: Being in Houston, I assume you can’t get anybody out.
Luhnow: Well played. I’m thinking about keeping you for a couple of weeks based on that alone.
Player: That’s cool. I’ll look for apartmen…
Luhnow: Negative. You’re going to Milwaukee.
Player: Jesus, where should I book a hotel? This is my life. You know that right?
Luhnow: I’d trade my own wife if the return was a 19 year-old with a lively arm and two plus-pitches.
Player: You’re a weird dude.
Luhnow: I signed three first-round talents in the 2012 draft class and avoided forfeiting a future pick. If he doesn’t fall off a cliff, I’m going to get Mark Appel next year. I’ll find a taker for Wandy. I’ll unload Lowrie if his legs aren’t spontaneously combusting. I claimed a guy named Mark Hamburger off waivers today to flip him for some fries. I’ll make Jordan Schafer smoke so much weed he thinks that train cart with the oranges is his living room. There is no spoon, padawan.
Player: Now you’re just mixing meme’s to screw with me.
Luhnow: Enjoy the Brew Crew. Planning on keeping tabs on you. We may seek to acquire you again soon.
Player: I’ve heard decent things about Houston.
Luhnow: Forget them. We won’t contend until 2017. You’ll be in Depends by then.
Player: I’m 25.
Luhnow: My point exactly, hit the bricks Buck O’Neil.