The Royals have had one of the easiest to define historical archs of any Major League baseball team. While nearly every team has its wide swaths of good and bad years, the Royals are an especially extreme case. From expansion birth through the late 1980s, the Royals were consistently very good and considered to be one of baseball's model franchises. After a short period of mediocrity, the bottom fell out by the mid-1990s and the Royals have never made it back. Good, then bad. That's basically the franchise history. The team hasn't even had a "near-miss" season, really, since the 1980s.
As such, there's a stark generational divide amongst Royals fans when it comes to their experiences. The scary thing is this: now we're into the second generation of Royal rooters who have never seen a truly good team.
Let's work our way from past to present.
- Royals fans age 60 & up: The older members of this demographic (65 & up) may remember the old Kansas City Monarchs, who left town in 1955. The Kansas City A's are also more than a mere reference point for these fans. A sixty-year-old fan would have spent his late childhood and early teenage years, always ripe baseball years, with the A's still in town. Considering their experiences rooting for the A's (who were a consistently horrible team in KC), they may actually have the best perspective on the current struggles of the Royals. Good times come and go.