Known for sending daily inspirational emails to friends and staff alike, Hurdle distributed this poem, written by Greg Shea in 2000, to Pirates staff before his team's 1-0 victory over the Cubs in 10 innings.
THE SPIRIT OF OPENING DAY
Today you'll dig in the closet for your glove and snap a ball into it while sipping your morning coffee.
Today you'll drive to work and admonish yourself to "keep your head down" and your eye on the road.
Today your team will be in first and planning to stay there. Today you'll wonder about developing and selling tobacco-flavored toothpaste, as you spit into the sink.
Today you'll still be able to turn the double play.
Today you'll end your contract holdout.
Today you won't lose a business deal in the sun. Today you'll find yourself rotating your arm around your head to stretch the shoulder and keep it loose.
Today sunflower seeds strangely find their way into your back pocket.
Today you'll think of wearing a black suit to match the eye black.
Today you'll have the steal sign.
Today you slip up in a meeting and mention "our sales team vs. lefties."
Today as the toast comes out of the toaster, you'll still remember how to execute a perfect "pop-up" slide.
Today a hot dog and peanuts for lunch will sound about right.
Today you tell a co-worker to "get loose."
Today the only strike you'll know about is above the knees and below the armpits.
Today you'll wear your jacket only on your pitching arm.
Today you'll buy two packs of gum and stuff them in the side of your mouth to look like a player.
Today, during lunch, you'll wonder why Coke doesn't come in a wood can.
Today you'll scratch yourself and spit for no apparent reason.
Today you'll wonder why stirrup socks never caught on as a fashion rage.
Today you'll be the rookie looking to make it big.
Today you'll be the wily vet with just a little something left.
Today you'll look for the AM dial on your radio.
Today mom's watching.
Today dad's in the backyard with his glove.
Today will be hopeful.
Today it'll still be a kids' game.
Today you'll be a kid.
Today is Opening Day!
Make a difference today.