Some things to talk about while the beginning of the end of Twitter is signaled...
1) Trembley speaks
Predictably, the lashing out against former Astros manager Bo Porter in the past few days has been met by Porter's camp. In this case, it's former bench coach Dave Trembley, who took to the airwaves to fire a few shots across the bow of the Astros front office.
Dave Trembley to @MLBNetworkRadio: "What baseball people want is they want their opinoin to be aksed and their opinion to be respected...— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) September 4, 2014
Trembley con'td: "...and appreciated, and I think that's really what was the disconnect in Houston."— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) September 4, 2014
Trembley on personality clashes: "I thought it escalated this year. Last year was a feeling out with Bo & Jeff being new on their jobs"— MLB Network Radio (@MLBNetworkRadio) September 4, 2014
Trembley: "I thought Bo did a great job containing information, but it all eventually gets out. It got to be a lot of drama all the time"— MLB Network Radio (@MLBNetworkRadio) September 4, 2014
Trembley: "In Houston, people have a way of saying whether or not this is going to be a good player; the coaches sometimes see different"— MLB Network Radio (@MLBNetworkRadio) September 4, 2014
Drellich took the time to transcribe Trembley's interview in full, which gives much more shading than the few snippets which made their way to twitter. It colors the difference in a different way. To read the full interview, it sounds like the issue was more a Bill Parcells' problem. Porter wanted to be the guy picking the groceries if he was going to be making the meal. That wasn't happening in Houston.
When Bo Porter first got the job in Houston, who was the first person he called? Trembley. A sort of mentor for Porter, Trembley was supposed to provide the experience on the staff to counterbalance Porter's newness to the job.
What we can't know is how many of these accusations are true and which ones are being embellished. Did Porter really refuse to listen to his coaching staff at times, as Evan Drellich wrote earlier this week? Did the front office really dictate lineups to Porter, as everyone has implied since Porter's ouster?
The truth lies somewhere in the middle. Look at how Trembley downplays the hyper-critical nature of Luhnow for Porter's in-game actions. That likely got overblown this week, as Trembley points out. But, there was clearly a problem and it lay in communication between Porter and Luhnow. Once that relationship broke down, could it be salvaged?
At any rate, consider this less than surprising. After Brian T. Smith wrote that great profile on Trembley last year, he became a coaching staff favorite. He was always genial and good-natured around the batting cages. It's a shame he was fired, just like it's a shame Porter was fired.
2) Correa healing
A bit of good news fell yesterday in this week of bad news storms, when Jeff Luhnow spoke to the media about Carlos Correa's rehab. The new is pretty encouraging, though not good enough that the Astros would hope to see Correa in the Arizona Fall League.
"He's running," said Luhnow, who spoke to reporters Wednesday evening at Minute Maid Park just before the Astros (60-79) faced the Angels in the finale of a two-game series. "He's doing activity in Florida and progressing very well.
"It's a very good sign," Luhnow added. "We feel like we're ahead of plan with his recovery, which is a good place to be. I've seen a lot of guys go through injury recovery before. He's as diligent and focused on healing as possible. Obviously the body has to heal naturally, but he's not going to let any lack of effort or work delay him by even one day."
No games yet, but Correa seems to be healing fine. Breathe out, slightly.
3) Cashman & Luhnow
Do you ever wonder why anyone gives Jeff Luhnow grief this early into the rebuilidng process? Why fans expect more from him, despite the team he was given? Do you ever wonder why TCB staffers get called front office apologists so regularly?
Well, it probably says something about expectations. The difference in the expectations in Houston and in New York are so vast, you can't even see across the space. Why? It's apparently a thing to be reported that the Yankees will bring back Brian Cashman as GM, despite their sub-par season.
Cashman, whose Yankees teams averaged more than 96 wins a year and won four World series championships in his previous 16 seasons, doesn't seem concerned about the situation.
That's 96 average wins in 16 seasons. And Cashman's job was in jeopardy. Luhnow averaged approximately 27 wins per season in his first three years. And only now, some people are getting restless and calling for his head.
Expectations, man. Expectations.
4) BONUS THING: Justice on Altuve's MVP case
This is apparently a thing. I approve.
Jose Altuve @JoseAltuve27 should absolutely be in consideration for AL MVP— Jeff Luhnow (@jluhnow) September 3, 2014
Richard Justice discusses this with Keith Olbermann. What could go wrong from this pairing in the comments?