Tim Crone: Royals need to try something different
We are at the halfway point of the season for the Kansas City Royals. We are in a familiar place after such a promising start.
Their probability of playoff odds is officially at less than 0.1 percent.
The team record as of Friday is 33-47 after nine straight loss. They are 15 games out of first place and not in the chase for a wild card berth. There are only two teams in the American League with a worse record than the hometown team, having fallen behind Detroit and Minnesota into sole possession of last place in the Central Division to bring up the bottom of the pack.
It has been six years since the Royals won the World Series. We all knew that free agency was going to tear that team apart. As fans we needed to be patient and let the organization rebuild in a different direction.
The last six seasons have been very painful to watch. As a loyal fan you must take the good with the bad, but fan pain can only last so long. It does not look like the game plan is working.
The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and coming up with the same result. How many times do Hunter Dozier and Jorge Soler come up in key run scoring situations and strike out before it is apparent these guys are offensively hurting the team?
How many times does Adalberto Mondesi have to go on the IL to realize he is not made to play a 162-game season in the big leagues?
How many times does a team have a pitching staff that gives up 13 walks in a game to come to the realization that you have problems throwing strikes as a pitching staff?
How many times do you have to listen to a game and hear the broadcaster use injuries as an excuse?
How many times does the defense give up big innings because of errors due to lack of execution of basic plays?
How many times do you have to lose games because of poor fundamentals?
I guess we all get the point.
Some of the answers are basic. Dozier and Soler are in over their heads right now and they keep digging bigger holes for themselves. Mondesi has five-tool skills and a grade school body. He is just not built to play every day.
The organization keeps running out young arms day in and day out who cannot throw strikes. Yes, they have talent, but they will not succeed without finding the plate consistently.
I realize announcers have a tough job watching a team struggle year in and year out, but other teams have injuries and do not fall apart. That is called quality depth, which the Royals do not seem to have after a six-year re-tooling.
The defense has been something the Royals organization has hung its hat on in the past. In the last couple of years, the team’s defense has been at best average and half the time even poor.
I will always be a fan. I am just asking is the organization really improving or is it just spinning its wheels?
Baseball is a difficult game that takes time, but does that mean every season the pattern needs to repeat itself?
I previously received some negative comments about my statement that the team always signs guys who are great in the clubhouse. I agree with that philosophy from top to bottom. However, this team needs players who are great on the field and hate to lose.
Royals fans can hope for a successful second half of the season with young talent able to find their way but doing the same thing year after year is insanity.
• The quote of the week comes from former major league player and manager Haywood Sullivan: “In all your endeavors, both present and future, remember to have the courage of your convictions.”
Tim Crone, a William Chrisman High School graduate, is a former activities director and coach for Blue Springs High School. He writes a weekly column for The Examiner. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.