Dayton Moore has been - well, a lightning rod around these parts. While we were overjoyed when he was initially hired and liked many of his early moves, his acquisition of players like Jose Guillen, Yuniesky Betancourt, and Jeff Francoeur soured many on "The Process." Seven years into his tenure Dayton Moore produced his first winning season. A year later, he produced what seemed unthinkable the day of his hiring - an American League pennant.
Dayton followed up his World Series appearance with an off-season that puzzled many observers and was roundly criticized on this site. Yet through the first month, his team has the best record in the American League with an exciting brand of baseball.
While the Royals have been acknowledged to have a decent analytical department, it seems clear that Dayton Moore is not the same kind of general manager as "Moneyball" GM Billy Beane. He still seems to acquire hitters with low on-base percentages and projected one-WAR pitchers. However, the main argument in "Moneyball" that many observers seem to miss, was that to beat the market, a team must "zig" while others "zag". Dayton Moore, whether by design or by accident, has built both a remarkable defense and a remarkable bullpen that has produced huge results. While other teams struggle on the field or give up leads on a nightly basis, Dayton Moore has found a formula that can overcome a lackluster offense and a mediocre pitching rotation.
But is it sustainable? This team will not hit .290 all season. The Royals have been able to overcome lackluster starting pitching, but for how much longer? Do the Royals have enough depth to sustain multiple injuries to the roster? There are reasons for concern.
Its been a fun ride so far, and while "The Process" may not be the way we envisioned, its hard to argue with the more recent results. What do you think? Has Dayton Moore won you over, or are you still skeptical this is a long-term plan for success?
Do you approve of the job Dayton Moore is doing?