Former Astros manager Bo Porter isn’t one to look back. He prefers to focus on the future including his new position as the Third Base Coach for the Atlanta Braves.
Other teams reached out to Porter but a comfort level with Fredi Gonzalez made the Atlanta job a pretty easy decision.
“Atlanta is one of the best organizations in all of baseball as far as consistency and it’s a first class place,” Porter said Tuesday at his SELF Foundation’s Groundbreaking Celebration for a new baseball field at Key Middle School in northeast Houston. “They’re an organization year in and year out, they are in contention for the championship. That is the type of situation I was looking for.”
During Porters two seasons at the helm of the Astros, they were not an organization that could contend for a championship. His first team (2013), lost the final 15 games of the season to finish 51-111. Tom Lawless managed the 2014 Astros to the finish line after Porter was fired on Labor Day. Houston improved its win total by 19 games.
That progress is how Porter gauges the best takeaway from his first opportunity as a big league skipper.
“I deem success as whenever you arrive someplace, if you are able to leave and that situation is in a better place than it was when arrived, that is considered a success in my book.
“We were able to improve from one year to the next and create some excitement for baseball in the city of Houston,” he said.
Porter and General Manager Jeff Luhnow did not see eye to eye. Luhnow publicly stated he was looking for a new voice in the clubhouse after Porter’s dismissal and recently hired former Diamondbacks manager A.J. Hinch. Ironically Bo worked under Hinch in Arizona and when he was fired, Porter was elevated to the Bench Coach under Kirk Gibson. A subsequent successful stint on the Nationals coaching staff put Porter in high demand for a big league managerial position. A potential dream scenario of managing in his adopted hometown of Houston didn’t work out. He knows that timing plays a big role in obtaining one of the 30 coveted jobs, but he might not jump at the next opportunity.
“The next situation I put myself in, it well be one in which I will be very selective,” he admitted. “I will make sure the fit is something I can envision long term.”
Porter has spent some time recently as a studio analyst on the MLB Network’s studio show. While that has been something he has enjoyed, he is more then ready to get back on the field.
Bo and his wife Stacey also promise to continue to make an impact in the Houston community with their ambitious SELF Foundation.
“Houston is home and Houston is a place we will continue to give back to the community,” he stated.
Facility improvements have been part of the foundation’s agenda and the new baseball field at Key Middle School fits those objectives.
“The facility will not only give back to the kids,” he said, “but it will also give back to the community for many years to come.”