It was the cover that blew people's minds. Now three years later, the man behind it finds it...amazing.
"Here's the most amazing thing about it," said Ben Reiter. "They told the world exactly what they're going to do. And now they've done it."
Reiter, the writer of that Sports Illustrated article from 2014, projecting the lowly Astros someday becoming the best team in baseball, mixing new age thinking with a dash of old school scouting.
"Everybody hated this cover when it came out," recalls Reiter, who consulted the SI editorial staff when estimating the year the Astros might win it all. "They thought we were looking for clickbait.'
"(But) there was a lot of consideration that went into that; as well as a 5000 word article explaining why."
Reiter adds he and the Astros discussed a behind-the-scenes look at the team's operations for about a year before the club consented.
The man on the SI cover, outfielder George Springer, tied the record for World Series home runs Wednesday in Game 7.
"It was cool," said Springer of being pictured on the cover. "It was kind of like, 'That would be sick if that happened.' But who knows?"
Who knows? The whole world knows now after the Astros stunned the Dodgers 5-1 to win their first World Series in franchise history.