The Pirates will finish the 2019 season in the cellar of the NL Central, ending a tumultuous season that saw several clubhouse incidents and instigation of HBP wars with other teams. It seemed like a foregone conclusion that manager Clint Hurdle would be fired and GM Neal Huntington might not be far behind him.
Surprisingly, Hurdle will be back managing the Pirates in 2020, The Athletic’s Stephen J. Nesbitt reports, and signs seem to indicate Huntington will be back as well.
The 62-year-old Hurdle has been with the Pirates since 2011, amassing a 732-719 (.504) regular season record. The Pirates made the postseason three years in a row from 2013-15 — losing the 2013 NLDS followed by the NL Wild Card game in the next two seasons — and haven’t been back since.
Hurdle is under contract through 2021, as is Huntington. Some big changes will have to be made to the team to not only improve the talent on the field, but the culture in the clubhouse. Hurdle said, “I’ve had more situations in the second half of this season than I had in 16 1/2 years of managing.”