PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Pittsburgh Pirates Owner Bob Nutting and new Pirates President Travis Williams took all questions today about the clean sweep of the Pirates management and the team’s new direction.
Both acknowledged the anguish by the team and the fans over this year’s second-half collapse and the anger among the fan base over the continued losing.
“Obviously we’d love for them to all be happy all the time but what it tells me is they still care,” New Pirates President Travis Williams said. “That’s a lot better of being at the point where the fans don’t care and they’ve walked away completely. So our charge at this point in time is that we turn that anger into passion. Passion for the product on the field, passion for what we are delivering off the field.”
Pirates owner Bob Nutting reaffirmed his commitment to the Pirates.
“I am fully committed to this organization,” Nutting said. “Fully committed as a steward of the Pittsburgh Pirates. Fully committed to bring a winning team back on the field, fully committed to providing Travis, the new general manager, and our new team with the resources they need to get the job done here in Pittsburgh.”
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As it always is with the Pirates, the issue of payroll was raised to Williams and Nutting.
“We did not talk payroll,” Williams said. “I do not believe that payroll is a direct colliery on the field. I believe there are a lot of factors that go into it and I believe Bob is committed to working with me, working with the new GM, to figure out what is the right formula in order to bring success back to the Pirates franchise.”
Neither Williams nor Nutting would commit to a timeline of bringing winning baseball back to Pittsburgh.
“I want to see it immediately, I think that will be the challenge that we have,” Nutting said. “I am not a patient person. I think we need to see success, we need to drive forward at the same time we do need to recognize its going to be a journey. We need to get started on that journey now, we need to be showing tangible progress along that journey, we need to celebrate the steps we take along it.”
The search is now on for a new General Manager and once that person is selected the search will resume for a new Manager.