clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Murray Chass on the Pirates

Nice article on the Bucs in the New York Times:

The Pittsburgh Pirates have endured 15 consecutive losing seasons, one season short of the record for futility, and this is how they decided to reverse their fortunes:

The club chairman hired a president who had never run a club or even worked for one.

The president hired a general manager who had never been a general manager, and wasn't even an assistant general manager when he got the job.

The general manager hired a manager who had never been a major league manager, had been fired from his last job as a major league coach, and had managed a minor league team last season to the worst record in the International League.

You know, if you'd explained things to me like this - without naming names - right after Dave Littlefield was fired, I think I would've been pretty happy with the situation, just because I'd have known the Pirates would be trying something completely different. The Pirates' situation is so desperate that outside-the-box people almost seem like the franchise's best shot. I mean, Frank Coonelly and Neal Huntington are like Jimmy McGinty and Shane Falco from The Replacements. Normally I think it's stupid to believe that these sorts of people can change anything, but when you look at what someone like Wayne Krivsky - who was well-regarded when hired - is doing to the Reds, you have to wonder whether the weird management team the Pirates have assembled just might work out well for them.

In any case, Huntington's right:

Huntington understands why fans may be skeptical.

"Nothing I say will cause the fans to turn their opinion of me," he said, "but what we do will cause the fans to turn their opinion of us."

Well, at least he's right about the first part. We'll see about the second.