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Pirates set to name Andy Haines as hitting coach

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Haines spent time with both the Milwaukee Brewers and Chicago Cubs.

MLB: Milwaukee Brewers at Cleveland Indians David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Pirates continued to fill organizational gaps Tuesday morning as they hired Andy Haines as their new hitting coach.

Haines, 44, spent four seasons with the Milwaukee Brewers, including 2021, where they finished 11th in the National League in team OPS (.713) and tied for last place in team batting average (.233).

In the postseason, the Brewers posted a collective line of .182/.211/.302 with 48 strikeouts in just four games, which ultimately led to a divisional round loss to the eventual World Series champion Atlanta Braves.

Before joining the Brewers, Haines spent some time managing with the Miami Marlins’ Minor League system and eventually moving to the frontier league. According to Jason Mackey of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Haines also led the Greensboro Grasshoppers to a 2011 South Atlantic League (SAL) championship after a 79-60 regular season record.

Some notable names that were under his direction on that team were J.T. Realmuto, Marcell Ozuna, and Mark Canha.

Click here to see more from the Grasshoppers’ 2011 championship season.

Mackey also said that the Pirates wanted to hire a hitting coach that could construct an “organization-wide hitting philosophy,” after the firing of Rick Eckstein. Given Haines’ experience at both the Major and Minor League level, he fit the criteria of what the team wanted going forward.

Haines replaces former hitting coach Rick Eckstein, who was fired prior to the end of the Pirates’ 2021 regular season. An announcement by the team has not been made as of yet.

For more on Andy Haines, here is a video from his appearance on “Ahead of the Curve.”