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Hurdle helped seal Overbay deal

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Before flying back to his home near Seattle, Lyle Overbay had lunch this afternoon in Pittsburgh with new manager Clint Hurdle. Overbay came away from the meeting convinced he’d made the right decision by signing a one-year, $5 million contract with the Pirates.

“(Hurdle) was a big part of my decision,” Overbay said. “I talked to a lot of people about him. I like that way he goes about it — his honesty, his knowledge of the game, his energy. He made me feel comfortable. I’m an easy-going guy, too, but when it’s time to go after it, I know how to turn the switch. He’s the same way.”

»»» Overbay’s left-handed pop (20 homers last season) should fit nicely in the lineup. With 10 years’ experience in the majors, Overbay is by far the most tenured member of the Pirates’ young infield.

“I don’t remember becoming an old guy, but I guess I am,” Overbay said with a laugh. “I’ve been through some things, so maybe I can help. I’m not going to be a drill sergeant, but I want to be part of the solution.”

The Pirates will hold a one-week minicamp in Bradenton, Fla., in early January. Overbay is not required to attend, but is leaning toward coming to Florida.

“With such a long trip (from Seattle), usually when I come East, I’m there for the duration,” he said. “But if the younger guys are going to be there, I don’t want to not be there and set a bad example. I want to do what I can.”

»»» Overbay’s contract is only for 2011, but he’s already thinking of the future — in Pittsburgh. “I’m hoping it will last longer than (one season),” he said.

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