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Clint Hurdle considers his future with the Pirates

David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

Rob Biertempfel has some interesting tidbits on Clint Hurdle's future with the Pirates, and who his successor might be. The Bucs have not yet exercised their option on Hurdle for 2018, and Hurdle says he has not yet spoken with the team about a new contract.

"There will be a point in time when this organization will let me know if it no longer wants me here or if it wants to keep me here. I'm not going to knock on the door. I don't talk about it. I believe my volume of work has put me in a place where, if my career ended tomorrow, I'd be good."

There is no indication the Pirates are considering firing Hurdle, and it would be a surprise if they didn't ultimately extend him. He has his weak points as a tactician, as most managers do. But he was ahead of the curve in his integration of analytics into the Pirates' on-field strategy, and he still appears to have the respect of his players. As I mentioned a few days ago, if the Bucs were to let Hurdle go, he could almost certainly get another managerial gig if he wanted one.

The piece also suggests that, whenever Hurdle does decide to move on, the Pirates will likely replace him internally, with current bench coach and former minor league manager Tom Prince as a possible successor. Jeff Banister likely would have been next in line had he not left a couple years ago to manage the Rangers.