Huntington reportedly in line to take over Pirates' GM job

The Pittsburgh Pirates are close to hiring Neal Huntington, a special assistant to Cleveland general manager Mark Shapiro, as their next GM, the Beaver County Times of Pennsylvania reported Friday.

The newspaper, citing multiple unnamed sources, said Huntington's hiring could be announced as early as Monday.

The Pirates' job became vacant when Pirates owner Bob Nutting fired Dave Littlefield two weeks ago.

Huntington, 37, is in his 16th year of professional baseball and has been with the Indians for 10 seasons. He didn't immediately return a phone message seeking comment.

New York Mets vice president of player development Tony Bernazard, Toronto player personnel director Tony LaCava and Milwaukee scouting director Jack Zduriencik were among the other reported candidates for the Pittsburgh job.

ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick contributed to this report