When I point out to people that the last several teams to win the World Series have had a top 12 payroll, someone always mentions the 2003 Marlins.
I think the 2003 Marlins were horrible for MLB. Too many owners now think that lightning will strike twice, and their team can win a WS on the cheap despite the fact that recent history shows that it takes money to assemble a team capable of winning the WS.
I'm afraid Crane will turn the Astros into another As. Always trying to win on the cheap, trading popular players, and driving fans to the closest in state team. The As have driven a lot of Bay area young baseball fans to the Giants, and Crane will drive a lot of young TX, OK, and LA baseball fans to the Rangers.