The past couple weeks have been a bit of geek overload for the Houston Astros. Not only do they bring in a new GM with solid analytical background, but they interview Keith Law and hire a Director of Decision Sciences.
I don't even know what that means! But it's awesome!
Look, as I've said in the past, I'm not thinking Houston has an automatic advantage over other teams. After all, there are plenty of teams (including Luhnow's former team in St. Louis) that have already been doing these same kinds of things for a while.
No, it's all about bringing the Astros back up with the big boys, so everyone is on the same page. No longer will Houston's GM make silly comments about Pedro Feliz hitting 20 homers because of the Crawford Boxes. No longer will we sign an over-the-hill Woody Williams as a rotation saver (oh, wait, that was more Drayton...).
It's going to make the going around here harder, though. How will we be snarky about the team when they're making good decisions instead of silly ones? We might actually have to start doing good analysis and not criticize the organization so much. Might as well shut things down now...
Seriously, though, it's very exciting to see Houston building up its decision-making base. Farmstros ran down all the cool conferences and places Sig Mejdal has worked with his decision sciences expertise. Add to that the quotes in the Chronicle about wanting to collect info in one place and you can start to see the infrastructure Luhnow is trying to build.
What I do wonder is whether Brad Arnsberg would have thrived more under this new administration. We know he was a film nut, but if he had all this other information at his fingertips along with the video, could he have been more effective? Would Luhnow have sided with Brad Mills in that argument?
Those are questions we can leave for another time. For now, I'm just stoked the Astros are going geek. It's about time.