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Pirates interview Clint Hurdle for managerial opening

Nov 4, 2010, 7:03 PM EDT

Clint Hurdle AP

The Pirates’ search for a new manager is picking up all sorts of steam.

According to Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, the Bucs interviewed Rangers hitting coach Clint Hurdle on Thursday in what could be the club’s final managerial interview.

Hurdle enjoyed great success as the Rangers’ hitting coach this season, helping to lead that franchise to its first-ever World Series appearance.  He also had a nice run as manager of the Rockies earlier this decade — a run that included a World Series loss in 2007 to the Red Sox.

The Pirates interviewed eight total candidates for their opening this fall and SI.com’s Jon Heyman reported earlier this week that only two finalists remain: Hurdle and Bucs bench coach Jeff Bannister, who is hoping for a promotion.

For what it’s worth, Tracy Ringolsby of FOXSports.com says that Hurdle appears to be the “leading candidate.”

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