Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE
The Pittsburgh Pirates will extend manager Clint Hurdle through the 2014 season with an option for 2015.
Prior to the extension, Hurdle was set to enter the final year of his contract with the Pirates. He has been the team's manager since 2011, leading Pittsburgh to a 151-173 record.
While still below the .500 mark, the Pirates have shown signs of improvement under Hurdle. The team has been in the playoff race in each of the past two seasons, and the 79 wins the Pirates notched last year was the franchise's most since 1997.
Before taking over as the Pirates' skipper, Hurdle logged eight seasons as the manager of the Colorado Rockies from 2002-2009. He registered only one winning record in Colorado, but it came in 2007 when the Rockies went to the World Series. They ultimately lost to the Boston Red Sox, and Hurdle was relieved of his duties less than two seasons later.
There is still work to be done in Pittsburgh, as the Pirates continue to seek their first winning record and playoff appearance since 1992. However, it appears things are going in the right direction, as the Bucs have a young nucleus built around top young position players Andrew McCutchen and Neil Walker.