Wednesday afternoon, Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow stopped by the SiriusXM studios in Washington, D.C., and sat down for a live interview with Mike Ferrin on Power Alley. It was Luhnow’s second sit-down interview in D.C. on MLB Network Radio; but this one came a day after a trip to the White House.
“We went to the East Wing,” Luhnow told Ferrin and Jim Duquette. “It was really neat to see all the portraits of presidents and people around and what an amazing structure. My kids had never been so it was quite a lot of fun.”
Among the baseball topics discussed in Luhnow’s half-hour conversation on Power Alley was the influence of Dexter Fowler on Astros young prospects Jon Singleton and George Springer.
“I got to say, a lot of the credit goes to the person standing in center field,” Luhnow told Ferrin and Duquette. “Without Dexter Fowler, without his mentorship or leadership and the way he has really taken Springer and Singleton under his wing […] Dexter Fowler is one of the most important players on our team right now.”
Over the past few seasons, the Astros have traded their veteran talent to stockpile their farm system with prospects. This year, that won’t be the case.
“It will be different because people won’t be calling me,” Luhnow said. “The last couple years people knew we had Wandy [Rodriguez], we had Bud Norris, we had players that they weren’t sure if they were available, but they were going to call us and find out.”
Luhnow also spoke about Mark Appel‘s struggles in professional baseball, speaking confidently in his ability to adjust later in the season.
“He’s going to get back on the mound after the All-Star break and I expect that he’s going to have a strong second half.”