Is the Astros' Magical Mystery Tour About to Go All Helter-Skelter?

Categories: Sports

Will 2017 be the Astros' "Abbey Road" melody
Sure the team's had three straight 100-loss seasons. Sure there have been several games with 0.0 TV ratings (the story leaves out the whole CSN Houston fiasco). Sure attendance has plummeted. Sure the team's a punchline on Jeopardy! and is facing the anger of the players' union due to the low payrolls. It's all going to be worth it.

The Sports Illustrated story is the McCartney part of the song. The Lennon part of the song comes several days later -- Saturday night in fact -- when Chronicle beat writer Jose de Jesus Ortiz lets loose with some tweets that show everything's not quite as harmonious inside the organization as Sports Illustrated would have everybody believe. The clubhouse isn't happy. The coaches want to win. They're upset by quotes in the story. They think the story's a slap in the face. They're dismayed that the front office won't promote certain players from the minors who they believe would be huge improvements over current players on the roster and who would lead the team to more victories.

Jeff Luhnow's the guy running things with the Astros. If push comes to shove it'll be Bo Porter and his coaching staff looking for jobs before Luhnow. Luhnow's got the history, his work building the Cardinals farm system, if anybody disputes his plan. The Astros are Porter's first try at managing a major league baseball team. He's not been that adept at handling the pitching staff, particularly the bullpen, but still, there's only so much a guy can do in respect to some of the players on the roster.

The Astros are currently on a pace for 70-plus wins. That's something to celebrate knowing just how bad they've been the past several seasons. The cornerstones are in place for a really good team that might actually be able to fulfill Sports Illustrated's prophecy. But there are some cracks in the front office/dugout relationship, and at some point the coaches have to decide if they're going to just all "Let It Be," or if they're going to go all "Revolution." But if the coaches don't get in line, they probably won't be around to see culmination of the "Abbey Road" melody resulting in that predicted World Series win.

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