Pirates' Clint Hurdle named winner of NL Manager of the Year award
By Bill Brink / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
The Sporting News named Pirates manager Clint Hurdle winner of its National League Manager of the Year award today.
Hurdle received five votes. Atlanta Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez received three votes and St. Louis Cardinals manager Mike Matheny got one.
Nineteen major league managers voted for the award.
Hurdle took a Pirates team that finished 79-83 in 2012 and managed them to a 94-win season, an NL wild-card berth and a loss in five games to the Cardinals in the National League Division Series.
Under his command, the Pirates avoided a third consecutive fall from contention in the second half of the season.
Hurdle did not do it alone.
Francisco Liriano, Mark Melancon and Jason Grilli led a stellar pitching staff. An MVP-caliber season from Andrew McCutchen, improved defense behind the plate from Russell Martin and a powerful season from Pedro Alvarez helped as well.
But Hurdle continued to hone his handling of the bullpen, monitoring their innings and appearances. He instituted an event at the beginning of a series where he and his coaches discuss the finer points of the previous series and emphasize important issues for the upcoming series.
Boston Red Sox manager John Farrell won the American League award.