The Pittsburgh Pirates look to be closing in on their next General Manager. Apparently, the next hire is between two candidates.
Leading up to this week, the main candidates for the Pittsburgh Pirates General Manager job were not clear. It was reported that the team discussed the opening with a lot of different candidates from former General Managers to front office personnel from other teams around the league. One thing was for certain, the Bucs were casting a wide net trying to find the best candidate to fill the role.
They even went as far as hiring an expensive search firm by the name of Korn Ferry to lead the search. Korn Ferry led the San Francisco Giant’s search last year for a President of Baseball Operations. The Pittsburgh Pirates have really invested in finding the right fit for the organization going forward and it looks like it is going to pay off.
Earlier this week it was reported that the team was down to three candidates for the job. The three candidates were Brewers Assistant General Manager Matt Arnold, Blue Jays Vice President Ben Cherington, and the Bucs interim General Manager Kevan Graves. Graves seemed like a longshot candidate who the team was interviewing out respect for his current role in the organization. He also interviewed for the San Francisco Giants General Manager vacancy before it was filled, thus proving that other teams viewed him as a potential General Manager.
It was then reported that the team would be interviewing both Cherington and Arnold this week. There was no mention of Graves other than speculation from local Pittsburgh media that he would also receive another meeting. That report was never confirmed and it has now been confirmed that the team has two finalists in Cherington and Arnold.
There was a series of tweets put out by both local and national baseball reporters confirming that those two are the finalists. Heyman first tweeted and said a decision should be coming sooner than later:
"Heyman: “Pirates GM derby is believed down to Ben Cherington of the Jays and Matt Arnold of the Brewers. Decision shouldn’t be far off.”"
Jason Mackey of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette also confirmed that the Pittsburgh Pirates were down to Arnold and Cherington. He tweeted that Cherington actually had his final interview yesterday and Arnold’s would be today. Furthermore, Rob Biertempfel of The Athletic speculated at what Kevan Graves’ role could be going forward.
"Mackey: “My understanding is that Ben Cherington is interviewing again today. That would likely put Matt Arnold tomorrow, and it would make a decision by Friday at least a reasonable possibility.”Biertempfel: “I’d expect that after making their GM hire, the Pirates will retain Kevan Graves (currently interim GM). Graves is liked and respected in the PNC Park offices and throughout the industy, and his knowledge of Pirates’ sytem and personnel would be a valuable asset for the new GM.”"
It sounds like the Pittsburgh Pirates hunt for a new General Manager is coming to an end. Both Cherington and Arnold are very deserving candidates and any Pittsburgh Pirates fan should be happy that it has come down to those two. Both should be able to improve the current state of the organization. Hopefully, an announcement will be made by this weekend.