Thursday, July 26, 2007

Ye Ole Reality Check...

Ok, fine. We get it baseball gods, the Royals are not a playoff caliber team.... alright, they are not even close to a playoff caliber team; but, come one! Throw us a freakin' bone here! I'm sick of the continuous vomitting induced by the Yankees lineup thoroughly raping us. Just give us one close game where we can go into the bottom of the ninth with a reasonable chance of winning the game! We get the point, and we've fallen hard off of our high horse that we mounted and tamed after an extremely successful road trip. I thank you for taken Scott Elarton to the baseball afterlife, but we need more! We want Mark Teahen to squeak a line drive off of the bottom of the foul pole! We want a complete game from somebody, anybody! We want Jason Larue to crawl into a hole and never come out! And mostly, we want the MOTHER F$%*ING Yankees to leave and bother someone else!!!

Tonight: De La Rosa continues to struggle, and Kei Igawa finds his rythm (Not rythm at the level of the blockbuster hit "Stomp the Yard", but rythem none the less!)

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Monday, July 23, 2007

Has A New Era Begun...

Or are we just getting set up for extreme disappointment? The Royals have been trapped in the cellar, feeding on rats and bread crumbs, since an extremely fluke 2003 season (though not at the fluke level of Jeff Weaver, Jeff Suppan and the 2006 World Series Champions). After a great win (and series win) in Detroit, the Royals find themselves tied with the always hated and lowly White Sox. Yes, it's just fourth place, and yes, there is indeed a lot of season left, but things seemed to have really turned a corner. The Royals have played above .500 baseball for two months now and just finished 5-4 on the hardest possible road trip in baseball. Billy Butler appears to be an absolute prodigy and the bullpen continues to excel. Which leaves us with the question of "What is next?" Well, hopefully for the die hards who have suffered through 20 years of miserable baseball (luckily it's only been about 6 for me), this marks the beginning for a team that will contend for division championships for years. I'm obviously getting way ahead of myself, but this is about as exciting as Royals baseball has been in a long time. Just think... when was the last time you can remember not counting down the days before the Chiefs go to River Falls just to take your mind of the disgrace of KC baseball? It's been a while. Go out and continue to watch this team develop because I think that good things are in store for Royals fans soon.

Tonight: Roger Clemens realizes why Chet Steadman (Gary Busey) is the real Rocket.

Trade Bait, Summer Edition

Whenever I get crap for being a Royals fan, I always run to the same maxim: yes, it may suck now, but imagine how good we are going to feel when we actually win something. If we won the World Series, I would go on a bender that would topple half the freakin' continent.

But that won't be for a while. It's amazing to see a team once so far down and out resurge, and really play some awesome baseball against the best teams the American League has to offer--on the road, of all places! It is becoming clear we have the pieces to make something special, but we as fans now need to be patient as development is often a painfully slow process.

Though the Royals have won 22 of their last 38 games, it is important to see what kind of moves we can make to ensure a better future. In the Glass-Ball era, we pretty much sold off guys we had developed for years to the highest bidder to avoid paying them what they were worth and trimming the thrifty Dave Glass's profit margins. But, as you see so often, a contending team pressing for an impact player will toss up some of their best prospects--think of the Mets trading Scott Kazmir for Victor Zambrano, and The Cards trading Dan Haren for Mark Mulder. But, more often, the prospects never deliver on the promise you traded away (Dye for Neifi Perez, ahem ahem), and you are probably stuck with a malcontent who can't hit or field.

So, it may suck to see some very likeable players get traded. However, if it pans out and the Royals win 100 games in three years, it may be a little easier to forget about the Mark Grudzielaneks of the world.

Tradeable Assets

Mark Grudzielanek, 2B: Since coming of the DL, Grudz has been hotter than the shores of Rio de Janeiro. He has also been a reliable veteran leader, and he won a Gold Glove, for Chrissakes! When was the last time a Royal did that? However, it looks like the Mets are in need of a 2B, and if there is anyone we can pry uber-talent Lastings Milledge out of their grasp...we gotta do it. But I looooooovvvveee me some Grudz.

Octavio Dotel, RP: I have less fuzzy feelings about this one. While I admire Dotel's performance this year (holding righties and lefties to matching .379 slugging percentanges), I don't see how he could possibly pitch better than this. Also, he pitches with a tremendous amount of emotion, and when the pressure is on, he has the poise of Kid Rock in Congress. Every contender is going to want bullpen help. If we get tossed a B/C pitching prospect, who are we to say no?

Reggie Sanders, OF: Ok, we won't get much for this one unless we take the entire cap hit, which is something the Royals will do. The Red Sox are interested and are growing disenchanted with Wily Mo Pena, a guy who can hit it to Nantucket from Boston...if he makes contact. Big, big if.

Emil Brown, OF: My theory about the reason Joey Gathright was sent down was that Dayton Moore would try his best to deal Brown for, well, anything. Gathright is the guy they wanna keep; it's impossible to send Brown to the minors without waiving him. Every night, I pray that his bat wakes up for a magical week so that we can get some discarded, left out minor league pitcher who amazingly develops into our best pitcher. I just finished Harry Potter, so maybe I am thinking too fantastically.

Yanks tonight...for four games. They have been pounding the ball like Team AppleJuice (our softball team's) talented opponents this year.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

This is the end

In today's KC star, Sam Mellinger wrote a piece trying to elicit sympathy for the oft-injured Royals captain Mike Sweeney, piling up the stats, and making an effort to relate Mike's mental and physical struggles. I respect the attempt, but I'd like to offer my interpretation of the Mike Sweeney saga.

When Mike is healthy, he's good. Batting title good. However, since he signed that mega-deal 5 years ago (5 years, $55 million, evenly dispersed at $11 mil per year), he has played in about 60% of the Royals' games. Now, he's down and out again, and if there is merit in the poll conducted by the Star, Royals fans want to see Billy Butler out there even when Sweeney comes back. If he comes back.

It's a sad end for a guy that has stood out in the community who said and did all the things you could expect from a team captain--except play the freakin' games. However, I'm not really sorry for him. I was more patient with Sweeney than most of my friends, but that patience has been completely depleted. I don't think he's "stealing" the money, but he's just not on the field, bottom line.

Baseball is a bigger business now than it has ever been--in 2007, all of the attendance records are going to be shattered, and it won't even be close. Our team is starting to show some promise, and while I agree that it's unfair to characterize Sweeney as the symbol of some of the most truly awful teams of the last decade, that's just how it works. We need to part ways for the culture of the team, which some people probably think is some hooey gooey bullshit, but it exists. It comes down to a business decision.

And I think that decision has been made.

Brandon Inge has red hair. I hate that guy.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

The Trouble with Teahen......

Before I begin this infuriating look inside the season of Marvelous Mark Teahen, I would like my readers to know that I am a huge fan of the 3B/OF/1B/OF again/PIMP. That said.....

There are very few positives: Pretty good defensive adaptation, decent batting average (.282), and a great batting average with runners in scoring position (.378).

Other than that it has been a pretty rough go for the young man. David Dejesus has as many homers and also carries a higher slugging percentage than Teahen (Double D: .418, Teabag: .402). Teahen is striking out like a power hitter (81 Ks!!!!, tied for fourth in the AL. Currently riding an unbelievable 20 game whiffing streak) and is hitting homers like a girl scout (5, tied for 33rd of AL OFs. He has not hit a homer since May!). He is on pace for just over 80 RBIS (43 at the break, tied for 40th in the AL) and has just 24 extra base hits total. These are not the kind of numbers that even an average corner outfielder/infielder can expect to keep a job with. Especially on a team that already can't hit the ball out of even the little K on most nights. Which brings up an interesting thought... did the Royals miss out on an opportunity to trade a young third baseman while he was hot? I know it's just one half of a year, but Teahen has also only had one good half of a year in his career. Teahen turns 26 in September, so he is no spring chicken by any means. If he does not start driving the ball with more regularity and reducing the whiffs, Royals fans may have to sit and wonder if the Royals missed a chance to trade a piece of their team that the front office was ready to replace by a prodigy (Alex, duh).

Tonight: Gil fans the side in the seventh inning...

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Oh, this is &*#$&% great

Mike Sweeney will be out longer than we expected. Sayonara, trade value.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

What the White Sox Club House Looks Like After A Win

Yep, yet another reason to despise the White Sox (yet getting mildly turned on)

What A Shocker...

Two things should shock Royals fans right now. 1.) Yes, we really did spend 55 mill on a free agent and 2.) IT ACTUALLY WORKED (so far). Gil Meche has been named the teams lone all-star representative after putting up great numbers in the first half. Dayton Moore has done some good things for this team so far and it is starting to look like we are headed in the right direction. Yes, we blew a chance to hop into fourth place in the division (the bats once again looked aneamic in the last two games), but we had a winning month and some young bats look good, and i'm not talking about bats in the sense of the academy award winning film, appropriately titled BATS. Speaking of crazy animals killing people in movies, I highly recommend the movie Piranha, in which a school of mutated Piranha designed to wipe out the Vietnamese in the Vietnam war are unleased in a Texas river. Sounds awesome right? Right. Anyway, back to baseball. Or do you want to here more about Piranha? Circle YES NO . Fine, baseball it is. Joe Posnanski wrote a steller article in the star today about the fleet-footed Joey Gathright. Apparently Joey has finally learned that swinging for the fountains is not the answer for the minuscule speedster and has learned to put the F'in ball on the F'in ground. As Corban said, when this guy gets on base, havoc ensues. I think that the Royals can play .500 ball over the next three months and finish fourth in this division, I really do. I just wish some of the guys on this team could figure out how to put the ball over the fence in between the foul poles.
Prediction for Royals record on October the 1st: 80-82

"I am the man"

When we're bored, there's nothing my friends and I like to do better than go to a local strip mall and jump over cars. This old video (from 2002) shows Joey Gathright practicing our favorite activity.