Mike Matheny, Cal Eldred out as Kansas City Royals season ends

The Kansas City Royals wasted no time making sweeping changes at the end of their disappointing 2022 season.

Mere hours after the year came to a close in a 9-2 loss to the Cleveland Guardians, Royals general manager J.J. Picollo fired manager Mike Matheny and pitching coach Cal Eldred.

This comes just a couple weeks after president of baseball operations Dayton Moore was fired before the end of his 16th full season with the club.

Picollo issued a statement about Matheny in the wake of the latter’s dismissal.

We are grateful to Mike for leading us through some unusual times these last three seasons. He met those challenges head on and helped us move forward in a positive manner. We thank him for his leadership and know his influence will have a positive impact moving forward.

In three seasons with the Royals, including the Covid-shortened 2020 season, Matheny’s winning percentage was .430 with a 165-219 overall record. Under his watch, the Royals finished fourth in the AL Central in 2020 and 2021 before finishing last in the division this season.

Matheny also issued a statement on Wednesday.

Managing the Royals has been a true privilege. I’m thankful to so many, primarily Dayton Moore, and the coaches and players I’ve worked with. I would like to thank Mr. John Sherman and the ownership group for the opportunity to manage their team, and everyone involved in this great organization. I came to the Royals knowing it was an organization of excellence and care, and was shown that care every single day. Royals fans should be excited about this group of players, and I look forward to watching them continue to grow.

Eldred, who was a teammate of Matheny’s for two different clubs, had been Kansas City’s pitching coach starting with the 2018 season. During his five-year tenure, the Royals finished 21st or worse in team ERA four times, including 27th or worse three times.

Picollo is scheduled to meet with the media on Thursday.