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Pirates Manager Search: Will the third time be the charm for Ken Macha?
By John Perrotto
Perhaps the third time will be the charm for Ken Macha.
Macha interviewed for the Pirates’ manager’s job for the third time in 10 years on Tuesday, a day when general manager Neal Huntington also talked to bench coach Jeff Banister about the opening that was created when John Russell was fired on Oct. 4.
Macha lost out to Lloyd McClendon after the 2000 season and Jim Tracy following the 2006 season. The 60-year-old Macha has had two major-league managerial stints, compiling a 525-447 records in six seasons with Oakland (2003-06) and Milwaukee (2009-10). The Brewers told him on the final day of the season that they would not exercise the option on his contract for 2011.
Macha has strong local ties as he graduated from Gateway High School and Pitt, and resides in Latrobe.
Macha was the Pirates’ sixth-round draft pick in 1972 and made his major-league debut two years later. He also spent parts of the 1977 and 1978 seasons with the Pirates before moving on to Montreal (1979-80) and Toronto (1981). Primarily a third baseman, Macha played in 180 games and batted .258 with one home run and 35 RBIs.
Banister, 45, has spent 25 seasons in the Pirates’ organization since being their 25th-round draft pick in 1986 as a catcher from the University of Houston. He was promoted from minor-league field coordinator to bench coach on Aug. 8 when Gary Varsho was fired.
Banister appeared in one major-league game, singling as a pinch-hitter in 1991 to finish his career with a perfect 1.000 batting average.
John Perrotto is a contributor to Inside Pittsburgh Sports. He is the editor-in-chief of BaseballProspectus.com