Coonelly out as Pirates team president
The Pittsburgh Pirates have parted ways with longtime team president Frank Coonelly, who said that "change was necessary" after the team's second-half swoon this season.
The Pirates announced the decision Wednesday, saying that Coonelly's replacement will be introduced next Monday.
"Frank and I both agreed that it was clear a change in the day-to-day leadership of the Club is needed," Pirates chairman of the board Bob Nutting said in a statement. "This leadership transition gives us the opportunity to refresh our entire operations."
The Pirates finished last in the NL Central this season, going 69-93 and missing the postseason for the fourth consecutive year. Pittsburgh was 42-43 on July 3 and was only three games out of first place in the division at the time.
But the Pirates lost 26 of their next 32 games, essentially dashing their postseason hopes and ultimately leading to the firing of manager Clint Hurdle, who was fired in September after nine seasons with the team.
"The second half of our season was disappointing to our fans and to all of us in the organization," Coonelly said in a statement. "Results matter and our results simply were not acceptable. It was clear that change was necessary.
"As we worked through a comprehensive assessment of everything that we do, I undertook an honest self-valuation. While not an easy conclusion to reach, I ultimately decided that the best interests of the Pirates would be served if the cub had a new leader who would bring new ideas and a new direction."
Coonelly joined the Pirates in Sept. 2007 and -- along with Hurdle and general manager Neal Huntington -- helped oversee the franchise's rebuild that culminated in three consecutive postseason appearances from 2013-15.
Bob Nutting has, indeed, begun firing everyone. And good for him. At 10:37 a.m. Wednesday, the Pirates officially announced that the team and Frank Coonelly "agreed to part ways," confirming my exclusive reporting the previous day in
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