PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Pittsburgh Pirates Manager Clint Hurdle has been named as the National League Manager of the Year.

The award was announced Tuesday evening.

A stoic Hurdle seemed grateful for the award, but admitted it was never a focus of his career.

“I’m excited to hear the news, but like I said, for me it’s like an oxymoron,” he said. “It’s never been a goal, it’s never something I put a lot of effort or thought about. For me, it’s about players playing the game, about representing, about taking care of each other, about the city and about the organization and the franchise. And basically it’s been a group effort, so many people have been involved.”

Hurdle helped to guide the Pirates to 94-68 record, which was good enough to win the top Wild Card spot in the National League.

The Pirates defeated the Cincinnati Reds in the Wild Card Game at PNC Park 6-2 to advance to the National League Divisional Series.

Pittsburgh led the best-of-five series against the Cardinals 2-1, but came up just short in the end. The Cardinals would go on to defeat the Dodgers in the NLCS before losing to the Red Sox in the World Series.

It was a remarkable season for the Pirates, who qualified for the playoffs and had their first winning season since 1992.

The Pirates were knocking on the door of the playoffs a year ago, but ultimately faded down the stretch to finish with a 79-83 record.

This year’s 15-game improvement and playoff run reignited the city’s love of baseball and has fans excited for what’s to come in 2014.

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