Writer enters fan mode, wants No. 3 hitter for Royals
Today is the day that probably shows our greed more than any other day – as we take back the gifts that weren’t quite good enough and exchange them for something else.
Say what you will about the day after Thanksgiving, but at least people are usually buying on that day to give to others.
With that spirit of selfishness in mind, I’m going to be selfish as a Royals fan right now.
I think if any fanbase in Major League Baseball has the right to be selfish right now, it’s Royals fans.
One winning season since I graduated high school in 1994, constant promises of youth movements, players like Carlos Beltran, Johnny Damon and Jermaine Dye leaving and finding success in larger markets.
Yeah, the Royals fans could use some good things to happen to them.
So for this column, I’m stepping out of the role of “unbiased reporter and observer” and stepping right into the role of fan.
Because when I spend my money and go to the game to root on the boys in blue, that’s what I am first and foremost – a fan.
So this column comes to you from the 13-year-old inside of me still angry at the Mark Davis signing.
The Royals have had a pretty good offseason as a whole. They got a couple of good bats with Coco Crisp and Mike Jacobs, though admittedly I’m happier with Crisp.
Jacobs hit 30 home runs last year, which I’m sure impresses someone, but not me. He hit those in the National League. You know the National League, right? That’s the league Manny Ramirez went to and hit 57 homers in two weeks.
It’s the same league CC Sabathia headed to midseason and suddenly became unhittable.
It’s the league that the Royals have OWNED in interleague play the last few seasons.
If Jacobs hits 25 home runs this season, I’ll be overjoyed.
The Royals are still missing one thing though. They need a legitimate No. 3 hitter in the lineup. So far, Alex Gordon is not that guy. He’s supposed to be, but he’s not.
George Brett wasn’t until about 1976. Maybe this is the year Gordon turns it around. I’ll hold out hope but believe it when I see it.
If Gordon and Butler finally live up to the potential they showed in the minor leagues, then this team could hit a lot of home runs.
But in order to do that, the Royals need a guy in that three hole who can produce consistently.
I’m betting we’ll still be waiting on that.
I love that Dayton Moore is making moves that improve the team on the field, not just moves to bolster the minor leagues. We’re not just sellers anymore. We’re bringing in guys people have heard of, but not when their career is beyond over like Chuck Knoblauch.
We fans want a title, yes. Every fan for every team wants that.
But what we truly want is a team that – when we pay money in a rough economy to park, get tickets, get food and maybe something from the gift shop – has a chance night in, night out to win on the field.
We want winning baseball in Kansas City. And we feel like we’ve been waiting a long time.
Is this the year we contend again for a title? Probably not.
But the division is creeping closer and closer back to us. The American League Central is no longer the best division in baseball.
We’re excited for the renovations. We’re excited to see what this team can do. We’re hoping Brian Bannister rebounds from whatever that second half of the season was last year.
I know it’s still 2008, and Spring Training is still a little less than two months away.
But baseball is always optimistic. As a fan, we have to hang on to hope. We don’t have all the money of the Yankees or Red Sox to spend on all the big name players.
But if we can get a good hitter in that No. 3 hole, be it Gordon or David DeJesus – who is my preseason choice right now – then we can at least compete with those guys.
And that would be an amazing gift for Royals fans. Well, that and a .500 record this year. I mean, tis the day to be greedy, right?