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Neal Huntington, Clint Hurdle expected to sign extensions

MLB: Pittsburgh Pirates at Arizona Diamondbacks Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Ken Rosenthal, citing anonymous sources, says both Pirates general manager Neal Huntington and manager Clint Hurdle are expected to sign contract extensions before the end of the season.

Both are in the final guaranteed year of their contracts; both contracts have club options for 2018.

This is sure to rile people up, but it’s not exactly a surprise. While the team’s trajectory since, say, November 2015 has dampened enthusiasm for Huntington, the Pirates aren’t likely to take such a dramatic change of course by letting him go. The same goes for Hurdle; it’s particularly troublesome for a manager to have lame duck status, so some sort of extension is logical for him, too.

Hurdle particularly has taken heat lately, I guess due to his inability to figure out what to do when a superstar falls off a cliff, your ace pitcher falls flat, your slugging third baseman can’t get into the country and your star outfielder gets busted for steroids. Some elements of those factors do fall under a manager’s control, but it seems that such vitriol is being directed at Hurdle just because it has to go somewhere.

Anyway, there are plenty of valid criticisms of these guys, but it’s unlikely they’re going anywhere soon.