KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The decision on whether lame-duck manager Ned Yost returns next year to the Royals rests solely with general manager Dayton Moore, according to club owner David Glass.
“That’s his call,” Glass said. “Whatever happens with Ned is up to Dayton, but you can write that I’m pleased with Ned and Dayton both. I like them both. I think both of them are doing a really good job.”
Moore has also repeatedly praised Yost’s work while deflecting questions regarding a possible extension by saying it would be addressed after the season.
“The whole coaching staff has done a good job,” Moore said recently, “but I don’t have those meetings until the end of the season. It’s just not a focus of ours right now.”
Yost, 59, replaced Trey Hillman on May 13, 2010 with a contract that initially lasted only through that season. He received a two-year extension on July 31, 2010 that included a club option for 2013.
The Royals exercised that option on Feb. 14, 2012 and, at the time, Moore said the decision stemmed in part from a desire to prevent Yost’s contract from becoming a distraction during the 2012 season.
Yost confirmed recently that he wants to return for 2014 and beyond but said he was comfortable with Moore’s decision to wait until the season concludes to begin serious discussions.
One complication, whenever those talks commence, is Moore’s contract only runs through next season. It’s rare, but not unprecedented, for a manager’s deal to run past the expiration of the general manager’s contract.
That could be remedied, of course, by a move to extend Moore’s contract, and Glass addressed that possibility by saying: “We’re all in this together. Dayton is a part of the family. I think he’s done a really good job.”
For now, everything appears on hold as the Royals, at 80-72 with 10 games remaining, try to secure their first postseason appearance since winning the 1985 World Series.
Prior to Thursday’s games, they trailed Texas by 2 1/2 games in the race for the American League’s final wild-card postseason berth, but they also must get past Baltimore and Cleveland to catch the Rangers.
The Royals had an open date Thursday but open a three-game home series Friday against the Rangers before closing the season next week on the road with three games at Seattle and four at Chicago.
“I’m trying to win ballgames,” Yost said. “Everything else is a distraction, and I can’t be distracted right now. So I don’t worry about it at all. I don’t even think about it.”