Houston Astros

Astros Owner Jim Crane Publicly Fires Hinch, Luhnow Following Suspensions

On a day where MLB finally handed out the long-awaited punishments for the Astros in regards to their 2017 cheating scandal that led to the World Championships, GM Jeff Luhnow who put together this Astros team and manager AJ Hinch, the leader of the squad, have been suspended one year without pay. Asst. GM Brandon Traubman, who was released by the Astros after how he handled the Roberto Osuna domestic assault situation in October, has been placed on MLBs one year ineligible list. The Astros organization has been fined $5M and stripped of all first and second round draft picks through 2022. Alex Cora’s punishment is currently unknown, and will be announced when the conclusion on the 2018 Red Sox cheating scandal is announced.

Many critics, myself included, don’t feel like this punishment is suitable enough. You can’t really punish the players, because then you’d punish teams like the Twins who have since signed Marwin Gonzalez. But, you can punish the leaders involved so no team risks the punishment for a championship again. Evidently, Astros’ owner Jim Crane agreed. Crane, while addressed the media, is quoted having said “we need to move forward with a clean slate.” Crane then announced to the media that he is firing Hinch and Luhnow.

Hinch, whose first manager job was the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2009 and 2010, joined the Astros in 2015. In his first year, they went from losing 100 games to defeating the New York Yankees in the AL Wildcard game, thanks in part to a Cy Young season from then-Astro ace Dallas Keuchel. In 2017, they won the World Series over the LA Dodgers. They’ve won 100 games each of the last 3 seasons under the guidance of Hinch. He is a 570-452 lifetime manager.

Jeff Luhnow was the head of the Cardinals scouting department from 2003 to 2011, before taking the Astros GM job. He was the brain child of major trades such as the Justin Verlander deal, that led to a championship. This past year, his major acquisition was future Hall of Fame ace Zack Greinke.

Luhnow and Hinch, much like Traubman, will not be allowed to work in a baseball organization until the conclusion of the 2020 World Series.

Pro Sports Extra will keep you updated as more information becomes available. No replacements are known for GM or manager at this time.

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