After spending a weekend at the K this past weekend, I was struck with why I love the Royals. Even though we lost both games I attended (in predictable fashion), I was actually proud to be a group of people that call themselves Royals fans. Not because of the quality of the team/front office - that is certain. Rather, because of a litany of other reasons that came to my mind...
1. The K. Strangely enough, it is now one of the oldest stadiums in baseball. Still, it is one of the best places I can think of to see a game. The Royals actually did a great job renovating the stadium without losing some of the things that make it special (fountains, crown scoreboard, open feel). Some of my best memories are setting in the outfield seats growing up and feeling like I was in a park - not a stadium. I've been to most MLB stadiums, including a large portion of the new ones. The K is something to be proud of.
2. The knowledge of the fans. The Cardinals can talk all they want about how knowledgeable their fan base is. I find very few Cards fans (or Yankee fans or Red Sox fans, etc etc) who know as much about the game as Royals fans. Royals fans know that when Joe Mauer comes up, they are watching something special. There was a buzz when it happened this weekend (and not just from the plethora of Twinkie fans in the crowd). Most fans knew that when our starters left, we were in trouble. They know things about BASEBALL - not just their home team.
3. Denny Matthews. We take for granted how fortunate we are with this guy. Having XM now, I get to hear all the announcers all over the league. Most of them are overbearing, loud, or excessively biased toward their home team. Denny paints a great picture with even tones. He's clearly for the Royals, but always fair. And the voice- you just never get tired of it.
4. Class. From the players, to the fans - the Royals historically are a classy group. As the obnoxious Twins fans chanted in the middle of our stadium last weekend, we didn't throw beer or yell curse words back at them. We simply ignored, or started our own cheers. No idiotic, drunken brawls like at a Yankees/Red Sox game. We have avoided the Barry Bonds thug players (although Guillen is close). We have no massively tainted players like McGwire (although Guillen is close). No Royals beating their wives or caught dealing drugs. There never have been and I hope there never will be. If we remain classy - the rest of baseball will cheer us when (and if) we ever win again.
5. Royals Review. A great microcosm of what it means to be a Royals fan. Superior knowledge and class on this board. Honesty in our opinions, but perspective as well. It sure would be great to win more, but I'd rather be a Royal fan than a Red Sox/Yankees/Cardinals/Twins fan any day of the week.
"Baseball is like church. Many attend, but few understand."