Arlington, Texas – Texas Rangers General Manager Jon Daniels formally announced today that the club has named Clint Hurdle as the team’s new hitting coach. The hiring fills the only vacancy on the Rangers’ 2010 coaching staff.
“Clint adds another experienced, successful coach to our major league staff,” said Daniels. “He’s demonstrated an ability to communicate, motivate, and emphasize a team-first offensive mentality. We welcome him, Karla and their family, and look forward to their contributions to the organization and our community.”
Hurdle, 52, was the manager of the Colorado Rockies for over seven years from April 26, 2002 until he was relieved from the post on May 29, 2009. Prior to that, he worked as that organization’s major league hitting coach from 1997 until he was named manager. Hurdle also served as a coach and instructor in the Rockies minor league system from 1994-96. He spent over 15 years in the Colorado organization from 1994-2009, posting a 543-625 record as manager, the most wins by any skipper in team history. He was at the helm for the Rockies’ run to the National League pennant in 2007 before a World Series loss against Boston. After leaving the Rockies in May, Hurdle spent time as a guest analyst for the MLB Network.
He will be just the Rangers’ second hitting coach in the last 16 seasons (1995-2010).
Hurdle mentored the Colorado hitters for five seasons and one month before ascending to manager in April 2002. In his five-plus seasons tutoring Colorado’s hitters, the club compiled the National League’s top two averages in a span of 70 years (.294 in 2000 and .292 in 2001) and the league’s most base hits since 1930 (1,664 in 2000). The Rockies also established a major league record for total bases (2,748) and extra-base hits (598) in 2001. Colorado hitters posted the National League’s highest batting average in each of Hurdle’s five seasons as hitting coach, leading in on-base percentage three times and slugging percentage on four occasions.
A first round selection (ninth overall) by Kansas City in the 1975 June draft, Hurdle had a career .259 average in the majors with Kansas City (1977-81), Cincinnati (1982), New York-NL (1983, 1985, 1987), and St. Louis (1986). He played for the Royals in the postseason in 1978, 1980, and 1981, batting .417 (5-12) with 2 walks in the 1980 World Series against Philadelphia. A highly-touted prospect, he appeared as a 20-year-old on the March 20, 1978 cover of Sports Illustrated as a member of the Royals.
Following his playing career, Hurdle spent six seasons as a manager in the Mets minor league system from 1988-93 before joining the Rockies. In 1992, he was the manager at Triple-A Tidewater when current Rangers skipper Ron Washington was on his coaching staff.
Although he spent much of his youth and attended high school in Florida, Hurdle was born in Big Rapids, Michigan. He and his wife, Karla, reside in the Denver area with a son and daughter. Hurdle also has an adult daughter who works in the San Francisco area. He was active in several charitable endeavors in Denver and is the national spokesperson for the Prader-Willi Syndrome Association, a complex genetic disorder with which his younger daughter was born.