The reward for leading a franchise from the depths of awfulness to the heady level of barely mediocre is evidently a 2-year extension.
According to Major League Baseball, via twitter (@MLB), and the Kansas City Royals (@Royals), the Royals have extended the contract of Dayton Moore for 2 years, through the 2016 season.
The @Royals and GM Dayton Moore agree to 2-year extension through 2016 season.
— MLB (@MLB) November 29, 2013
#Royals and GM Dayton Moore agree to a two-year extension, which runs through the 2016 season.
— Kansas City Royals (@Royals) November 29, 2013
Dayton Moore took over in May of 2006, although he supposedly sat out the MLB Amateur Draft that June. The Royals have struggled to remain relevant since then. Only in 2013 did they even reach the .500 mark, going 86-76. It was just the second time since 1993 in which they had won more than half their games.
Moore has been lauded for acquiring good young talent but that talent has been slow to develop on the Major League level. Some progress has been made as players acquired by Moore have started to come into their own. Salvador Perez, Eric Hosmer, Aaron Crow, Tim Collins, Kelvin Herrera, and others are starting to show signs of becoming solid big leaguers.
Others such as Mike Moustakas, Lorenzo Cain, and Alcides Escobar have struggled in their development, either because of injury or rampant inconsistency.
The Royals have still not developed solid starting pitching for the major league club, although hopes are high that Danny Duffy, Yordano Ventura, and Kyle Zimmer can buck this trend, and turn into more than back end of the rotation pitchers.
Moore was heavily criticized for trading Wil Myers (among others) last off season for James Shields and Wade Davis. While Shields was instrumental in changing the culture in the clubhouse with his fiery leadership on and off the mound, Wade Davis was a bust as a starter. Wil Myers went on to win the Rookie of the Year for the Tampa Bay Rays.
While the final ramifications of this trade still have not been made clear, there is no doubt the Royals would not have won 86 games without Shields. His talent, tenacity, and leadership reverberated through the whole team in 2013.
The key for Moore now, is to build up the talent around Shields to be good enough to make the playoffs in 2014, Shields last under contract.
This move by the Royals really comes as no surprise. When the Kansas City finished with a winning record, it seemed only a matter of time before the extension was offered and signed.