It’s been a little over two weeks since the Pittsburgh Pirates last interviewed a candidate for the open managerial position.  They’ve yet to name a manager and many believe that the Pirates were waiting for the New York Yankees to get eliminated from the playoffs.

Could they be waiting for another guy and another team to get eliminated from the playoffs?  Maybe Texas Rangers hitting coach Clint Hurdle?

It makes sense.

Hurdle, as manager of the Colorado Rockies, has shown the ability to deal with young players.  He handled the learning process great as skipper of the Rockies.  He took a last place team and guided them to the only World Series appearance in franchise history.

It would be a good fit because the Pirates had the youngest roster in the majors last season and likely will get even younger through the next couple seasons.

In Colorado, Hurdle became the public face of the franchise, which elevated credibility of the Rockies as a competitive threat in the eyes of baseball fans. This is important in Pittsburgh as well. 

While young studs like Andrew McCutchen and Pedro Alvarez will become the face of the franchise with time, it also would be good for the team to have a respected leader like Hurdle guiding the ship.

That’s what would separate a guy like Hurdle from the likes of Pena and the others.  That’s no knock on Pena and the other candidates, as they are all great baseball minds, but Hurdle has earned respect as a manager, while Pena and the others have not.

In seven-plus years as a manager in Colorado, Hurdle’s record was only 535-624, but after building with the young talent, he won the National League pennant in 2007.

He just may be the guy that the Pirates are waiting for.

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