As the season winds down, teams may begin making managerial moves to prepare for next season. Already the Detroit Tigers have determined skipper Brad Ausmus will not return next year after a disappointing season there. There had been some speculation that Royals manager Ned Yost, who has led the team to two pennants and the 2015 championship, may not want to return for the 2018 season if his core group leaves, and would instead look for a job elsewhere or retire and go hunting in the hills of Georgia with buddy Jeff Foxworthy.
But Yost left little doubt about his future when speaking to Between the Lines host Kevin Kietzman on 810 WHB today. When asked by Kietzman if Yost was “100%” coming back in 2018, Ned responded, “Oh yea, no doubt.” He added, “we’ll get through this year and see what direction we go in next year.”
Dayton Moore has recently hinted that the team may go through a rebuild next year. The club has several key players facing free agency this off-season including Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, Lorenzo Cain, Alcides Escobar, and Jason Vargas. But Yost did not equivocate on whether he would stick around for a new crop of Royals players.
“It’s always fun watching a group of special young players come up and accomplish what this group accomplished.”
Yost talked about the fun of watching Jorge Bonifacio, Raúl Mondesí, Jorge Soler, and Cheslor Cuthbert as “special” players, indicating he may want to be around for a rebuild around new young players.
Royals manager Ned Yost remains adamant that he'll be back next season. He says there's no scenario where he'll change his mind.— Rustin Dodd (@rustindodd) September 22, 2017
Ned dismissed the possibility of a contract extension, saying he and General Manager Dayton Moore would see where the 2018 season would take them. But he left little doubt about his allegiances.
“I love this organization, I love working for Mr. Glass.”
Yost said the highlight of his career was working with Dayton Moore, calling it an “honor and a privilege” and that he trusted Moore “wholeheartedly.” Yost and Moore are both signed through the 2018 season. Ned Yost has managed the most games in Royals history (1251), and has won 624 games since his hiring in 2007, also the most in club history.
Yost seems to very loyal to Moore, the man who hired him after his embarrassing dismissal in Milwaukee and stuck with him when everyone else in town wanted him fired. If Dayton asks Ned Yost to stick around through the rebuild, my guess is Ned will stay. Yost is just 62 years old, not terribly old for manager standards, and has a job only 30 men in the world have, working in an organization he seems to love.
Royals fans may have mixed feelings about Ned Yost, but it looks like they should get used to Ned being in that dugout for at least one more season, and possibly many more.