Richard Justice's new blog post is a worthy read, namely for how we're seeing the train cars unhitch from each other:
Beginning around July, Drayton will have a chance to dramatically remake the Astros. He has relatively low salary commitments for next season, and if the organization makes the right decisions, the club can at least be interesting in 2011 and maybe competitive in 2012. That outcome is dependent on the young players progressing. There's your X factor.
But he must be sure that he has the right people making the decisions, and that they're making those decisions based on all the available data. In other words, the Astros need to be more like the Rockets...
... Going forward, Drayton must check out baseball's smartest teams and try to find out what they know that he doesn't. I'd suggest a lunch with Red Sox owner John Henry or a quick read of Money Ball. He has the revenues and the franchise to be successful, but he must be sure that the important decisions ahead are based on the best available intelligence.
The Astros stink now, but they don't have to stink forever. That is, unless Drayton is unwilling to understand how we got to this point.
Meanwhile things just get worse. Carlos Lee is talking about retirement. Funny how he put the retirement date right at the end of that embarrassing contract. If his heart is no longer in it, he should go now.