As freshman Robert Moore finishes his long day filled with Biology and Spanish tests, completing worksheets and taking notes, he dashes to the locker room to change for the hour of sprints, heavy lifting and drills on the baseball field. Just 15 miles away, General Manager of the Kansas City Royals and Robert’s father, Dayton Moore is busy answering phone calls at the Royals clubhouse. They share a common passion throughout their day: baseball.
Robert is not an ordinary 14-year-old baseball player with his strong instincts and his switch-hit ability. For the graduation class of 2020, Robert is ranked 25 in the nation. He has been a member of team USA for two years and was named Perfect Game All-American in 2016.
Robert has a great to passion to win, stemming from his father’s experience as a scout with the Atlanta Braves and as the General Manager of the Kansas City Royals. Growing up he attended practices, games and spent time getting to know the game from the Braves and Royals coaches and players.
“Robert’s blessed because he’s been around the game since he was a little boy,” his father Dayton Moore said. “I remember him taking ground balls with Elvis Andrus [shortstop for the Atlanta Braves] when he was four years old.”
Robert got started in organized tee-ball at the age of four. He didn’t get serious until he joined a the premier team Mac-N-Seitz Indians at 9 years old. Now at age 14, he trains everyday at the Building Champions Baseball Academy or at East. He also travels 10-12 weekends in the summer with his teams, Team Elite and the Royals Scout Team to places all across the United States and Internationally.
“At a very early age of about 18 months, I would start to show Robert how to put a ball up on a tee, and he just took to it immediately,” his mother Marianne Moore said. “I would go into his room after he took a nap, and he would be swinging a plastic bat in his crib or he would always have to go to bed sleeping with his glove.”
According to Robert, he has not only learned from well-respected coaches and players, but also his father who has been coaching him since he was little. Dayton’s experience goes beyond working in the MLB. He played college baseball at Garden City Community College, and then continued on to coach at George Mason University.
The Moores discuss defensive and offensive strategies on the field, the importance of passionate work ethic and most importantly how to be a great teammate, which has ultimately helped elevate Robert’s baseball career.
“We both share a love for the game,” Dayton said. “It’s a tremendous blessing for me to be able to share the game with him and be able to express a game we both cherish.“
Throughout the years, Dayton has influenced the way Robert plays the game. His coaching has changed the way Robert approaches the plate when getting ready to meet a pitch and adjusted his outfield positioning in order to complete a play.
“Whenever he comes to watch games, he doesn’t say anything, but after games he’ll critique me,” Robert said.
Dayton’s critiques for Robert are always constructive. Whether it be advice about game sequences or strategies on the field, Robert has had an outlet giving him coaching that has helped him to succeed.
“I think that their philosophies about the game are just very similar,” said Marianne. “Consequently, Robert has been able to bounce stuff off of his dad throughout his whole life and get the direction that he has needed to thrive.”
The direction given to Robert led to him competing in the WWBA Freshman Championship and 14U Perfect Game World Series. He was also named to the all-tournament team at the 2016 WWBA Underclass Championship in Florida.
When he isn’t playing, he spends his time dreaming of one day hearing his name being chanted from Major League stadium stands. Along with the hopes to continue to play for team USA, he also aspires to play college baseball or get drafted into the MLB his senior year. Starting this summer, Robert will begin college visits to Division 1 schools.
Dayton and Marianne want their son to succeed in the coming years on the East baseball diamond, while playing with team USA and while hopefully playing at a college or MLB stadium. More importantly, they want him to use baseball as a platform to not only become a great leader, but a great person.
“The fact that Robert has passion and desire to win and he cares deeply about the game, that puts anybody in a strong position to not only reach your ceiling, but to be a leader,” Dayton said. “Hopefully he never loses his passion to play. As long as he stays passionate about the game and gives his best, he will reach his ceiling wherever that is. “