Opinion

Dayton Moore says ‘we love our fans’ after Royals manager Ned Yost incites criticism

General manager Dayton Moore (left) and manager Ned Yost
General manager Dayton Moore (left) and manager Ned Yost The Kansas City Star

Royals manager Ned Yost incited criticism, from The Star’s Sam Mellinger and others, for his comments on the sparse attendance during Tuesday’s 2-1 victory over the Twins.

Only 13,847 fans showed up for Alex Gordon’s MVP moment, a two-run, game-ending homer in the bottom of the ninth. The decline was sharp, considering a crowd of 31,758 attended Derek Jeter’s final game at Kauffman Stadium the night before. The first-place club averages 23,442 fans per night, and ranks 25th in attendance.

During a telephone conversation with The Star on Wednesday morning, general manager Dayton Moore expressed both support for his manager and appreciation for his fanbase, which has not seen a playoff team since 1985.

“I know Ned’s heart, and I know ours,” he said. “We love our fans. We’re very appreciative for their great support. I’ve been on record with that since I got here. That’s why I came here, was to build something for our fans. That’s why we came here.

“We came here to build something special and lasting for our fans to enjoy. That’s what we’ve tried to do. And we’re very appreciated for their great support.”

Moore indicated he was not aware of Yost’s exact comments, but the essence of them had been communicated to him.

“I do know where Ned’s heart is with our fans,” Moore said. “I know where ours, collectively, is. We’re very appreciative of all their great support. We’re very proud to represent them. We work very hard and passionately about putting a team on the field that they can enjoy. That’s the way we feel.”

Yost began his post-game news conference by saying: “I mean, what, 13,000 people got to see a great game?”

He went on to say “there’s a real need for our fans to be a part of this. We had a great crowd last night, and I was kind of hoping we’d have another great crowd tonight, and we really didn’t.”

Yost, speaking on WHB (810 AM) Wednesday morning, said his comments were not meant to be a criticism, but that he wanted fans to experience a playoff run.

“We understand what fans have gone through …” Yost said. “We can pay them back for all years of frustration.”

To reach Andy McCullough, call 816-234-4370 or send email to rmccullough@kcstar.com. Follow him on Twitter: @McCulloughStar.

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