Category Archives: ROYALS

A look back at the Top 10 Kansas City sports moments in 2017

As we start into the New Year, let’s look back at the Top 10 headlines and see what made 2017 great for Kansas City sports fans.

While 2017 was not as exciting as some previous years, like the Royals’ 2015 World Series championship, there was still so much that left fans of every team around the area happy at the end of the year.

Royals will have big shoes to fill for the 2018 season

There will be baseball at Kaufman Stadium in 2018, but the Kansas City Royals of the past six years will not look anything like the new model.

The teams that went to back-to-back World Series in 2014-15 won’t resemble the 2018 squad. After topping the New York Mets in the 2015 World Series, the Royals have played sub-.500 baseball.

Nine – count ’em – Royals have applied for free agency. The list starts with Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas and Lorenzo Cain, all who rejected qualifying offers to test the free agent markets.  The others are Jason Vargas, Alcides Escobar, Mike Minor, Melky Cabrera, Peter Moylan and Trevor Cahill.

Reality is beginning to set in – although the Royals’ front office probably knew all the time – that bringing back any of the big three appears to be miniscule.

With changes ahead, the Royals should have an intriguing off-season

The World Series is over and that means the free agent season is beginning, which will signify the dismantling of the 2015 World Series champions. The Kansas City Royals that won it all that year will not look anything like the Royals that will report in February to spring training in Surprise, Arizona.

General manager Dayton Moore, with the blessing of owner David Glass, kept the core of that World Series team together the past two years, but they didn’t make it back to the playoffs.

KC Royals started and ended the 2017 season with disappointment

The hole was Grand Canyon-deep from the beginning. The Royals dropped eight straight in late April. They lost 20 of their first 30 games, putting them seven games out on May 7.

Yet, they slowly climbed out of that. They went 17-9 in June and in late July they reeled off a nine-game winning streak. They were seven-games above .500 on July 28. They moved to within 1 ½ games of the division-leading Cleveland Indians.

General manager Dayton Moore went all in, acquiring Melky Cabrera from the Chicago White Sox and pitchers Trevor Cahill, Ryan Buchter and Brandon Maurer from the San Diego Padres.

Moore said he has no regrets about the trades with the hopes of giving this group of Royals one more chance to make it to post-season.

It did not happen.

After lengthy run, the Royals will probably lose core players due to free agency

There is a Neil Sedaka classic song, which Clay Aiken of America Idol fame redid, called “breaking up is hard to do.” That should have been the Kansas City Royals theme song for the final weekend of a disappointing 2017 season.

Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, Lorenzo Cain and Alcides Escobar made their Royals’ debuts in 2011, along with Salvador Perez. The first four are about to test the free agent market for the first time. They all played together the last time on October 1.

Royals pitcher Jake Junis has had many call ups to Kansas City this season

Jake Junis holds a Kansas City Royals record, although not verified, as a rookie. He has been called up a half dozen times this season from Triple-A Omaha. Twice he wasn’t even with the big league club for 24 hours as the 26th man for doubleheaders.

“Six times, I’ve been all over the place this summer,” Junis said.

Can the Royals regroup in September to make it back to the postseason?

Former Kansas City Royals manager Buddy Bell had a baseball saying, “don’t ever say things can’t get worse because they can.”

One wouldn’t think things could get worse for the Royals than they did in August.

The month included:

l. A 45-inning scoreless streak, three shy of the major league record shared by the 1906 Philadelphia Athletics and the 1968 Chicago Cubs.

2. Left-handed pitcher Danny Duffy, the Royals’ opening day starter, arrested and charged with driving under the influence in Overland Park.

Salvador Perez shows all the signs of being a Hall of Famer

Catchers give signs all the time, to pitchers on what pitch to throw next, to infielders and outfielders on where to play a hitter. Royals World Champion catcher Salvador Perez is no different. The Royals All Star has shown us other signs too. Signs that he could be a future Hall of Famer when he finishes his career.

Royals RHP Jason Hammel moves around, turns season around

Royals General Manager Dayton Moore suddenly had a gaping hole in the rotation after the death of Yordano Ventura in a vehicle accident on January 22nd in the Dominican Republic. Jason Hammel was unsigned after his former club, the Chicago Cubs, captured the 2016 World Series Crown. Moore promptly signed the right-handed pitcher to a two-year $16 million contract on February 8.

After a slow start in 2017, Jason Hammel said he has “absolutely” turned his season around.

“One hundred percent it’s changed for sure,” Hammel said.

Royals hope ‘Last Dance’ for key players is a ‘Victory Lap’ and World Series Championship

royals trade aquisitions

In 1972 a classic Marlon Brando movie “Last Tango In Paris” was released. In 2017, it is the “Last Tango In Kansas City” for several Royals. We all know, from owner David Glass, general manager Dayton Moore, manager Ned Yost and the players, this group of Royals will be scattered to several directions next year.

This will be the last season for Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, Lorenzo Cain, Alcides Escobar, Salvador Perez and Alex Gordon, the core group for six years, will be teammates.