KANSAS CITY – The Dayton Moore era in Kansas City, which spanned more than 16 years and included two major league titles and a World Championship title, is drawing to a close. Royals Chairman and CEO John Sherman announced that the organization has fired its chief of baseball operations Wednesday afternoon at Kauffman Stadium.
“Leading Dayton for 16 years will always mark the transformation into a world championship club,” Sherman said in a statement. “Our fans, our region and our community will never forget the excitement we shared at Back-to-back Banners and the World Championships in 2015. He always put the Kansas City Royals first, and we are stronger today because of that.”
The decision comes as the 2022 season draws to a close, with 30 league games under 0.500 in a year they were hoping to take significant steps forward in their rebuilding. While there’s a lot to like about the future with the core group of young hitters making it to the Majors this year, questions remain about the royals’ ability to develop the promotion and whether they have the right resources to carve out competitive seasons once again.
This responsibility now rests with JJ Picollo, who has been appointed executive vice president and general manager to oversee baseball operations. Piccolo has worked with and for Moore for decades, ever since they were at George Mason University, searching together for the Braves and coming together to Kansas City when Moore was appointed general manager on May 30, 2006.
“JJ’s experience in baseball prepared him for the challenges ahead,” Sherman said. “He has played a key role in evaluating and developing many of the most talented players in our franchise, including the 2015 World Series champion and the youthful core on today’s Major League team. He will bring a new lens and way to lead our baseball operations. I look forward to working with JJ as we continue Building and developing our team to compete at a high level.”
Moore’s goal was to overturn the organization, which he ultimately did, by building it from the ground up. The Royals improved their winning total in seven consecutive seasons from 2009-15, including their first winning season in 2013 (86-76) since 2003, back-to-back World Championships in 2014-15 and winning it all in 2015.
Moore and the royal family fully committed to another rebuild in 2018. They haven’t had a season above 0.500 since 2015.
Moore is well respected throughout the game – from his peers in the front office to the coaches and players – and has received numerous awards during his time in Kansas City. A member of the Kansas Baseball Hall of Fame and the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame, he was honored by the Boys and Girls Club with the John J. “Buck” O’Neil Diamond MVP and Negro League Baseball Museum’s Rube Foster Award for AL Executive of the Year in 2016. He helped create the Kansas City MLB Urban Youth Academy, the “C” You in the Major Leagues Foundation and Unite KC, all geared toward helping youth in the Kansas City community.
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