Sunday, September 23, 2007

Nothing is easy for the Pirates

If you've been paying attention, the whole GM search has gotten maddeningly complex over the weekend. On Friday we were told that Neal Huntington was the man, but Frank Coonelly quickly denied that. Today John Perrotto, who broke the story, backtracked like hell on it, saying the Pirates had reconsidered because other people in baseball thought it was a bad hire and the Pirates had decided to look in to why Huntington had been seemingly demoted within the Indians' organization this year. He originally wrote this (posted at FanHouse here):

Multiple baseball sources said Sunday morning that Huntington, a special assistant to the GM with the Cleveland Indians, may no longer get the job. The Pirates, who have had a blanket policy of not commenting directly about the GM search, are said to be very upset that the matter became public.

Furthermore, there are indications Coonelly has received negative feedback from various officials within the game for his decision to hire Huntington, who has lost much of his power in the Cleveland system in recent years and now primarily does advance scouting work for the Indians.
That article was up for most of the afternoon before Perrotto changed the story, which now reads as you'll find it at this link. The second paragraph in the above quote is now gone and this quote from Coonelly was inserted:
"As I stated earlier this week, in fairness to the process and each of the candidates, I would not respond to speculation and rumor regarding any specific candidates who are being considered for our general manager position. We are not changing direction or rethinking our position. Instead, we are moving forward with our search process in an extremely thorough and deliberate manner. This is a critical hire. It is important that we find the right person for the general manager position who can move our baseball operations forward. I am extremely confident we will accomplish that goal."
Both Perrotto and Paul Meyer consider this proof enough that Huntington is getting the job and I suppose it is, if you believed Huntington was getting the job in the first place. The only reason any of us believed that was that was what Perrotto, and later Meyer, told us. So what should we believe now?