The Kansas City Royals fired longtime executive Dayton Moore on Wednesday, ending the roller-coaster tenure of an influential general manager and president who took the club from perennial 100-game loser to two World Series and the 2015 championship before its quick return to mediocrity.
Royals owner John Sherman, who retained Moore after acquiring the club from David Glass in 2019, announced the move during a news conference at which Moore spoke briefly before quietly slipping out of the room.
“I think the objective is clear: It’s to compete again for championships, and we have to make sure we’re progressing toward that goal,” said Sherman, whose club was 30 games below .500 heading into its game against Minnesota.
“In 2022 we regressed,” Sherman said, “and that happens. It happens to great teams. But as I started talking to Dayton and others, I felt like we needed more change than was talked about, and that was a big reason to make this one.”
Sherman said he expects other changes to be discussed down the stretch and into the offseason, including whether to keep manager Mike Matheny and his coaching staff. But it will be up to Picollo to make those decisions.
Moore was hired in 2006 and tasked with rebuilding an organization that had not reached the playoffs in more than two decades. He quickly followed the blueprint that he learned from longtime Braves executive John Schuerholz, investing in Latin America and the minor league system before spending on proven major league talent.
It took most of another decade for the plan to work, but the Royals began to see progress with a winning record in 2013, when a wave of young players began to reach the majors. And the breakthrough came the following year, when a team built around Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas won the first of two consecutive American League pennants.
The Royals lost their first trip to the World Series to the San Francisco Giants in a dramatic seven-game series, but they finished the job the following year, beating the New York Mets in five for their first championship since 1985. But the failure to retain key players in a small market led to the franchise’s return to mediocrity in the following years.
Rays’ Randy Arozarena, Yandy Díaz had altercation after game
Rays teammates Yandy Díaz and Randy Arozarena had an altercation after a 4-0 loss to the Astros on Monday, partially prompting Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash to bench both players Tuesday in a 5-0 defeat to Houston.
Arozarena told reporters Wednesday night that there was no physical contact with Díaz, and that there were some little things they needed to address. He said things are good between the pair.
“I think these players, we owe it to them to keep what goes on in the clubhouse in the clubhouse,” Cash said before Wednesday night’s game with Houston. “I’m not going to confirm, deny, whatever, but, I’m very confident we’re past everything.”
Arozarena, a breakout star of the 2020 postseason who won AL rookie of the year in 2021, was in Wednesday’s lineup. Díaz was out again with a left shoulder injury that has impacted him recently.
Arozarena was seen watching Tuesday’s game from the Rays bullpen.
“I didn’t know he was in the bullpen, but I couldn’t care less where he was,” Cash said. “If I would need him to hit, I’m sure he would have ran down pretty quick.”
Brosseau slam lifts Brewers 6-0, Mets set hit batter record
Pinch-hitter Mike Brosseau greeted Drew Smith with a grand slam in the pitcher’s return from two months on the injured list, and the New York Mets squandered a chance to boost their NL East lead with a 6-0 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers.
Willy Adames hit a go-ahead home run in the sixth against Taijuan Walker, his fifth homer in 10 games and 31st this season, and the Brewers (79-70) closed within two games of Philadelphia (80-67) for the third and final wild-card berth.
The Mets (95-56), already assured of at least a wild card, maintained a one-game NL East lead over Atlanta (93-56), whose five-game winning streak ended with a 3-2 loss at Washington.
Mark Canha was hit by pitches twice and Luis Guillorme once. Guillorme was struck on the right foot by a Jake Cousins slider in the ninth, the big league record 106th hit batter of the season for New York. That topped the 105 by last year’s Cincinnati Reds, and Mets manager Buck Showalter signaled for the ball.
Mets center fielder Brandon Nimmo hurt his left quadriceps while stealing second base and left after the first inning. Left fielder Jeff McNeil banged up his right wrist against the chain-link fence in a failed attempt to catch Brosseau’s drive.
Meneses’ 8th-inning homer snaps Braves’ five-game winning streak
Brian Snitker wants the Atlanta Braves to pay closer attention when they’re running the bases.
A fifth straight postseason awaits the defending World Series champions, and the Atlanta manager knows the team can’t afford to make mistakes on the basepaths.
“As a baserunner, you have to zero in on the guy in front of you and nobody else because he might fall, he might not see things the way everybody else does,” Snitker said. “Your main focus is the guy in front of you when you’re running the bases, and we weren’t real aware in some situations today.”
Joey Meneses hit a go-ahead, two-run homer off Jesse Chavez in the seventh inning, and the Washington Nationals stopped the Braves’ five-game winning streak with a 3-2 victory on Wednesday as Atlanta cost itself with poor baserunning.
Ronald Acuña Jr. drove in an early run and scored another for Atlanta, which clinched a postseason appearance a night earlier.