The Kansas City Chiefs have discussed marketing their team in St. Louis, a city now left without an NFL franchise. With the Rams now playing in sunny Los Angeles, the Chiefs represent the closest professional football franchise. St. Louis fans have been through this before, with some fans jumping ship to the Chiefs bandwagon with the football Cardinals left for Phoenix in 1988.
This time around, St. Louis fans seem cool to the idea.
@FSMidwest Don’t you dare put any Chiefs or Colts coverage on in St. Louis. I’d rather watch poker.— Justin Striebel (@jstriebel22) June 20, 2016
The wound is still too fresh to tell whether or not the Chiefs marketing ploy will work, but it did get me thinking, what would happen if the unimaginable happened here - we lost the Royals? It seems unthinkable now, but when the Royals were up for sale following the death of the Kauffmans, the threat did loom over the franchise during their time of uncertainty, even despite safeguards built by Ewing Kauffman to keep the Royals in Kansas City.
Imagine for a minute, a nightmare scenario where a terrible owner of Stan Kroenke-proportions ups and moves the Royals to a new market. Where would your baseball allegiance go? Let's weigh the options.
The Relocated Royals
Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, Lorenzo Cain - they wouldn't just disappear, they'd be playing with new uniforms in some strange and inferior city. Instead of rooting for the front of the jersey, you could root for the back of the jersey - the guys that gave you so much joy over the year. It wouldn't be quite the same though, much like how "Saved by the Bell: The College Years" kept much of the same cast....but it just wasn't "Saved by the Bell."
Pros: Can keep your shirsey collection, just cross out the front.
Cons: Its like staying friends on Facebook with the girl that dumped you in college. Get over it, man.
St. Louis Cardinals
Well if the Kansas City Chiefs are targeting the open market of St. Louis for football, it would make sense that St. Louis would target a hypothetical open market of Kansas City for baseball. The Cardinals already have a strong reach in Missouri, it would not be a stretch to make the entire state bleed red. However, could Royals fans swallow the rivalry and jump on board?
Pros: Successful team, close proximity.
Cons: The fanbase is insufferable and will probably dislike you based on the high school you attended.
The enemy of my enemy is my friend, and with the Cubs fanbase, we share two common foes - the Cardinals and White Sox. Throngs of Royals fans made the pilgrimage to Wrigley Field to see the Royals last year. The distance to Chicago would not be too onerous for Kansas Citians to make a trip once in awhile to see their team. With the Cubs ascending in baseball, now is the perfect time to jump on the bandwagon.
Pros: Nationwide fanbase, fun park to visit, great team this year.
Cons: The Cubs last won a championships six decades before the Royals even existed.
New York Yankees
If you're going to jump to a fanbase, why not cheer for the most successful one? The Yankees have won 27 championships, as evidenced by the pickup trucks bearing stickers to revel in that fact, next to stickers of the Warriors, Broncos, Ohio State football, and Duke basketball. With the Yankees, you can expect to contend every year, and in the years you don't, you can obnoxiously demand that everyone be fired.
Pros: Lots and lots of winning.
Cons: The absence of a soul may prove damaging to one's humanity.
The Twins are the ward of the North, a six-hour trip from Kansas City. For years, Twins fans made the trek down to Kansas City to watch their boys beat the snot out of the hapless Royals, and to experience outdoor baseball in child-like fashion ("what is this weird smell? Its.....fresh air"). Kansas Citians could return the favor, traveling up to Target Field to experience all the natural beauty Minneapolis has to offer like their giant ferris wheels inside malls.
Pros: Hmmm....get to drive through Iowa?
Cons: Tough to get excited about Eduardo Nunez.
You could just enjoy baseball for the mere sport, without attaching yourself to any one team. Baseball is a beautiful game and advanced stats like "wins" and "losses" simply bog the game down. Enjoy the aesthetics of the game! What's the score? FUN to FUN!
Pros: No stress in October.
Cons: No one trusts someone who can't commit to a team. What are you hiding, anyway?
Others: Jumping on the Indians bandwagon leaves you plenty of legroom since no one comes to games....Dodgers fan apparel looks very similar to Royals apparel, so you could fit in easily....the Pirates are fellow small-market brothers....Brewers fans like to drink beer.