Pirates fire hitting coaches Jeff Branson, Jeff Livesey

The Pittsburgh Pirates have fired hitting coach Jeff Branson and assistant hitting coach Jeff Livesey after a fourth-place finish in the National League Central.

The two have been with the team since 2014.

"We appreciate all of the time, energy and effort that Jeff and Jeff put into the team," Pirates general manager Neal Huntington said in a statement. "Both are high-character, hard-working, good baseball men. We felt that this was the right time to take our Major League hitting program in a different direction."

The Pirates were sixth in the National League in batting average (.254), ninth in on-base percentage (.317), eighth in slugging (.407) and 10th in runs (692).

The team announced that there won't be additional changes to the coaching staff.