The Royals & Astros didn't exactly push baseball forward this weekend, though the Royals did go 2-1 in sloppily played one-run games. The day to day outcomes of this team have been irrelevant for nearly a month however, and as I type here, I get the feeling that everyone could use a break from another lame RR recap.
Instead, go read Rany's most recent post on the Royals' injury situation. It's easily one of the most important commentaries on the team that will appear this season, in any format, and I hope that it reaches as many eyeballs as possible.
So let me be the one to crash the party here and say what needs to be said: Nick Swartz needs to be fired. Immediately.
This is a trend, people. When the Royals downplay the extent of an injury, then give the player a few days off before sticking him back out there, and only later realize the injury was worse than expected THREE TIMES in the span of less than three months, this is not bad luck. This is incompetence, plain and simple. And while Hillman and Moore are the ones quoted above, they’re making those decisions based on the medical information they’ve been given. And the point man for all that information is Nick Swartz.
Rany runs through a cavalcade of mismanaged injuries. On the heels of Royals injury database, I think we can begin to see that this isn't all just aww-shucks bad luck. It's even more stunning to realize that when you stop and think about it, we can all come up with additional examples of bizarre situations that Rany left out.
If a batter goes 1-for-10, it doesn’t mean he’s a bad hitter. If he goes 10-for-100, it’s time to find a replacement. Swartz is like the batter who goes 50-for-500. The sample size is just too large. There are too many injuries that take longer than expected to heal. There are too many rehab snafus that deprive the Royals of their starting centerfielder, or destroy the career of a 25-year-old southpaw. There’s simply no way to wave off his track record as a stretch of bad luck, or to blame it on someone else. There isn’t anyone else.
Rounding back to the quotidian grind, as Rany points out in some detail, we're fed a lot of garbage on a day to day basis. I respect what Dutton and Mellinger do, but I wonder if they ever get frustrated, or even philosophically concerned or troubled by the fact that so much of what they're told by the team officials, players, etc. turns out to be, well, as Dayton would say, "absolute lies".