Astros make promotions, changes in front office

August 25th, 2017

HOUSTON -- The Astros announced a series of front-office changes Friday, with assistant general manager Mike Elias taking on a new role as assistant general manager, player acquisition. He will oversee the club's efforts in both international and domestic amateur markets.
That was just one of many promotions first reported by
Brandon Taubman has been promoted to senior director of baseball operations, research and innovation. He will continue to run the day-to-day Major League baseball operations functions, and he will expand his oversight to include the baseball analytics groups, which will include research and development of baseball technology.
Kevin Goldstein has been promoted to special assistant to the GM, player personnel. In his new role, Goldstein will be part of the baseball operations leadership group, and he will advise and assist with all player-related matters, including evaluation of internal and external talent.
The moves come a week after the Astros told eight scouts that their contracts wouldn't be renewed at the end of October. General manager Jeff Luhnow said the team spent a lot of time this summer examining where the organization and the industry are headed and how they could best configure the baseball operations group to take advantage of coming opportunities.
"We also wanted to do this as early as possible before the end of the season, so we didn't have this distraction during the postseason," Luhnow said. "Really, it's about aligning our resources and having our best talent in the best position to succeed. All of these people are well deserving of increased responsibilities, and we hope that this is something that gives us a continued edge going forward."
Also, the Astros said assistant director of player personnel Quinton McCracken and the team have mutually agreed to allow him to pursue other opportunities.
"The past five years have been invaluable assisting Jeff and our front-office staff to re-establish a winning culture in Houston," McCracken said in a statement. "I would like to thank Jim Crane, Jeff Luhnow and the entire Astros organization for the opportunities over the past five seasons, and I wish them the very best in the future. Looking ahead, I am very excited for this opportunity to spend some much-needed time with my family and for the next chapter in my career."
Other promotions include Oz Ocampo to special assistant to the GM, baseball operations. Ocampo will be part of the baseball operations leadership group, and he will advise and assist across player development, Minor League operations, international scouting and Major League baseball operations. Ocampo joined the Astros organization as director of international baseball operations in 2012, and he has played a significant role in overseeing the club's international scouting and player development efforts.
Meanwhile, Armando Velasco, who had served as assistant director of player development, has been promoted to director of Minor League operations. Eve Rosenbaum has been promoted to manager of international scouting, which will include the coordination and management of the international scouting efforts across Latin America and Asia.
The team has created an amateur scouting analysis group, which will be led by Charles Cook, and a pro scouting analysis group, which will be led by Matt Hogan. Brendan Fournie has been promoted to manager of baseball operations, where he will manage the day-to-day baseball operations for the Major League team.