Royals Rumblings - News for April 21, 2015
Jeff Passan writes that the Royals are acting like the drunk guy at the bar.
The city ate it up, of course, because it is like the friend of the drunken tough guy. You have to stand up for him, explain away his illogical behavior, do everything you can to justify him. And that's OK. That's laudable.
Just don't get indignant when the rest of the country looks at the Royals as belligerent, antagonistic and unlikeable when they should be seen like they were last October, before their inner pugnacity surfaced: fun, enjoyable and eminently likeable. If this is how the Royals want to be seen, how they feel like they must act to maintain an edge, so be it. Bullies eventually get punched in the mouth, though, and to call the Royals anything less than that right now would be sugar-coating things.
Michael Bauman of Grantland disapproves of the violence and retaliation in baseball, but he understands why its there.
It’s also why I can’t get enough of everything about this budding feud. There’s the history of the two teams — not just last year’s wild-card game, but also the way the A’s used the Royals as a farm club in the Moneyball years, and the way the A’s used Kansas City as a pit stop on their road trip from being good in Philadelphia to being good in Oakland. There’s the rambling apology text message Lawrie sent to a number Eric Hosmer told him was Escobar’s, a message Escobar claims not to have received. Then there’s the tension, the anger, the extra buzz of electricity that comes from two teams having reason to genuinely dislike each other; it’s like biting into a roast beef sandwich that you didn’t know had horseradish on it.
I wish there were a way to replicate that feeling, the slightly higher stakes that the threat of violence lend to a sporting event, without actually putting players’ livelihoods in danger. Because the threat of violence in sports is as addictive as it is euphoric, and I’m willing to compromise certain values, and condone certain distasteful or dangerous behaviors, to feel it again.
Jon Morosi writes that its time baseball to look for a solution to avoid hard slides like Brett Lawrie's slide on Friday.
Was Lawrie's play intentionally dirty? No. But it was unwise. And Lawrie has a history of exhibiting poor baseball judgment. There was the time in July 2012 when, while playing for a non-contending Blue Jays team, he catapulted himself into a Yankee Stadium camera well while trying to catch a foul ball . . . in the third inning . . . with Toronto already trailing 4-0.
All-out effort? Sure. Smart play? Absolutely not. The same description applied Friday night. Lawrie, although only 25, has been a major leaguer for all or part of five seasons. He should know better.
Craig Brown of Royals Authority tries to put the entire weekend into perspective.
Are the Royals now Public Enemy Number One? Honestly, I don’t care. If opposing teams are irritated at their celebrations or whatnot in 2015, they weren’t paying attention in 2012 or 2013. They have been doing this sort of things for years. Ironically, I can remember Royals fans who used to get irritated at these guys for doing those little celebrations when they had never done anything of relevance in the major leagues. Now they have actually won something, the tables have turned and now it’s the opposition that may be annoyed. Sorry. Understand though, this is in the DNA of the team. They aren’t going to change. Nor should they. If another team has issue with that, that’s entirely their problem. It shouldn’t open the Royals to crazy takeout slides or beanballs. You don’t want to see a celebration? Try getting them out.
This weekend, the Royals got the ejections and they will get the notoriety, but let’s not forget the A’s twice put the Royals in the position where they felt they had to stand up for their teammates. Not once. Twice.
The Royals say they are just ready to move on.
"It was an emotional series," Hosmer said. "We had the whole rest of the day yesterday to get over that. We’re back in the division now. It’s a team that took two of three from us last time, so these are big games."
The baseball public remained fixated on the weekend. A few hours before the game, Edinson Volquez looked up at a television inside the clubhouse. He watched a former player clad in an undershirt and a cowboy hat bang a gavel and declare a judgment against the Royals. Volquez’s expression did not change.
"We just care about what goes on in here," Hosmer said. "Obviously there’s going to the perspective from the outside point of view, and what people turn the TV on and see. But we stick together as a team. We realize that if we’ve got everyone on the same page, and everyone is toward the same goal, and we’re all in it together, then we’re a tough team to beat."
Matt DeFranks has an update on all the Royals recent injuries.
The MRI taken on Greg Holland's right pectoral revealed a Grade 1 plus pec strain, the lowest type of strain there is. Holland was placed on the 15-day disabled list on Saturday. "It was pretty good news," Yost said. "It wasn't a major strain. So hopefully, that's going to rectify itself here in quick fashion. The good thing about Greg Holland is he's a quick healer, so we'll see how that goes."
Ned Yost thinks Omar Infante could return tonight.
"Yesterday, it was real sore," Yost said before Monday’s game with the Twins. "He walked in today and it was better."
Matthew DeFranks looks at the recent history of pitcher suspensions as Kelvin Herrera and Yordano Ventura await their penalties.
This past weekend set a Royals record for best attendance in an April series.
Kansas City Star writers Andy McCullough, Blair Kerkoff, and and Vahe Gregorian discuss this past weekend's events.
J.P. Breen of Baseball Prospectus is buying this new Mike Moustakas.
ESPN's Power Rankings has the Royals second in all of baseball.
Grant Brisbee grades the unwritten rules of baseball in the Royals/Athletics dust-up.
Chiefs coach Andy Reid has the Royals' back. Here's more of what Reid had to say at his press conference as off-season programs begin for the Chiefs.
Reds manager Bryan Price went on a Hal McRae-level post-game tirade.
Even though there is a net behind home plate, you still have to be careful, as this fan found out.
Surprise, Joe Buck has a terrible idea for baseball television broadcasts.
Joe Posnanski has a Hall of "Nice" Players, players not Hall of Fame-worthy, but good enough to warrant mention.
Blake Griffin posterized the Spurs.
Kansas State basketball player Marcus Foster is transferring to Creighton.
Lelisa Desisa wins the Boston Marathon by just a few seconds.
How the Slack app is changing workplaces.
Do killer robots violate human rights?
Brett Morgen's documentary of Kurt Cobain was supposed to take eighteen months - it took eight years to make.
The Verge previews the biggest and buzziest movies coming out this summer.
Your song of the day is Jackie Wilson with "Please Don't Hurt Me."