OTC: Has Kansas City Embraced Royals Fever Yet? / TV 9’s Johnny Kane Casts The Royals Movie

“I really feel like this team has taken this city by storm. I just think this city is so locked into this team and they’re on such a ridiculous run right now. Man, it’s awesome! It’s so awesome to watch!”
Danny Parkins, 610 AM
GH: TV ratings are again setting records for Royals telecasts in August. Walk-up crowds at The K numbered in the thousands for the just completed four-game series with the A’s. I even placed a Royals sticker on my car window – the first time I’ve done anything like that since the early ‘90s. But has Kansas City embraced MLB and their Royals like it was 1985? Nope. There is still much work to be done and many broken hearts to repair. Read on.

“The interesting thing to me in polling the Royals fans in person is that when you ask them if they think this team is going to the playoffs, almost universally they say, ‘No.’”
TJ Carpenter, 810 AM
GH: Scoff at TJ’s informal polling if you want but I think the guy’s got a pretty good feel for what local fans are thinking – especially because he is a transplant from Arkansas. He doesn’t exhibit a lot of the scar tissue that most of us long-time Royals fans harbor.

“No, not really.”
Josh Willingham, the recently required slugger from the Twins, when asked by Nate Bukaty if he was not experiencing the vibe and atmosphere on this Royals team that has made them successful the second half of the season, 810 AM GH: Okay. So it’s just not some of the fans that are not caught up in the blue hysteria.

“(The Royals pennant race) has in some ways divided the city between young and old. The older generation has created this time machine and remember when there was a buzz in this city about the Royals. But for the people that are our age, for the first time in our lives we have seen competitive baseball and we’ve seen people excited about baseball with football just around the corner.”
Carrington Harrison, 610 AM
GH: Harrison’s and Parkins’ afternoon drive show on 610 itself divides the KC sports market by age. They market their show to a younger demo to take advantage of their youth and Kevin Kietzman’s audience’s more senior-appealing format. It is not a bad move in trying to unseat the undefeated king of Kansas City sports talk. I doubt it will work but it does define a clearly different demo for 610 to control and cater to advertisers.

“Do you even see the possibility of a collapse (by the Royals)?”
Danny Parkins, as the Royals clung to a half-game lead over Detroit on August 14th, 610 AM
GH: This is the naïve side of being 20-something. Parkins and Harrison went on and on how they could not even fathom the Royals falling out of contention over the next six weeks. Not only could the Royals be out of it in September, they could be all but gone before the end of August. Baseball is a cruel, cruel mistress. Never think you understand the game or its future. All we can do is watch, listen and hope like hell we break this 29-year drought.  

“Hey, what time do the Royals play tonight?”
Guy sitting in the booth next to me at Freddy’s last weekend
GH: I was a bit startled that this stranger saw me as the Royals expert as I downed my second double-cheese Freddy. It then dawned on me that I was wearing a Royals lid. Wearing a sports’ team cap is the universal sign to the world that you are a fan of that squad and open to blessings and barbs about your team. Kind of cool to see that kind of chatter happening in our town again.

“(Josh Vernier) will be on the road with the team (this week). It will be good to have our guy reporting on the road.”
Jay Binkley, 610 AM
GH: There have been a few of those 100-loss seasons where the local radio station holding the Royals rights cancelled the travel for the guy following the team on the road. I believe Nate Bukaty was yanked off the road one or two seasons when 810 was losing their shirt as the Royals rights holder. It is just another change in the Season of Woo to have 610 add Vernier to their Royals road coverage.

“There wasn’t a lot of tough moments. A guy lost a ball in the sun…”
Ned Yost, when asked after the Royals final game of the A’s series to comment on the “tough moments” in the, Royals Radio
GH: Yost can be such a putz. Of course there were tough moments Thursday afternoon in the Royals 7-3 win over the A’s! Dyson lost a fly ball in the sun allowing the game to be tied and eventually costing Shields the lead. Escobar gets called out for running inside the baseline after a throwing error had him on second base. Cain suffers a brain cramp and almost prematurely lifts his hand off third base after a failed pick-off attempt. And through all that palpitating madness the Royals persevered and beat the A’s for the sixth time in seven tries this season. As Ned said, “That’s pretty good.”

“We’re like Mayweather in the ring. We never give up.”
Jarrod Dyson, 610 AM
GH: Dyson with a Mayweather comment? Harrah’s anyone?

“It was a tremendous game to be at. That press box was alive. That entire stadium was alive. It was awesome to be here.”
Henry Lake, 610 AM
GH: The press box was alive??? Did somebody spike the popcorn? If these Royals have the media buzzing in the press box, this truly is a special team.

“ESPN just called (the Royals) ‘America’s sweethearts.’”
Luis Lozada, @MrPinkFloyd71, Twitter

“The seventh inning was nothing but a party. There’s no other way to describe it. The Royals took a 7-3 lead and never looked back.”
Kevin Kietzman, 810 AM

“September is going to be the key (to the Royals run at the postseason). It’s going to be how this team reacts. The key is going to be can they overcome their emotions or is it going to be, ‘Oh my gosh, we’re in uncharted waters here!’”
Mike Mcfarlane, 810 AM

“I’m very passionate about playing first and I love it. I understand how talented Eric is over there too.”
Billy Butler, on filling it at first while Hosmer is recovering from a broken wrist, 810 AM GH: I thought Hosmer’s injury was a death knell to the Royals season. Instead, it’s been the best thing to happen to Billy Butler since Zarda’s started cooking his sauce. And it might prove to be the best thing to happen to the Royals and Kansas City – outside of Sung Woo Lee that is.

“Billy’s turned his whole season around. Billy’s played spectacular defense over there. He’s played tremendous defense at first.”
Ned Yost, Royals Radio
GH: I don’t know about all that, Ned  – but Butler has made himself a LOT more attractive to any National League teams that are interested in picking him up for next season and beyond.

“The Royals are going to pound some people this week!”
Mike Mcfarlane, 810 AM

“I don’t really care if (Detroit) won or not. My team just played a great game. I don’t care if they’re aware or not.”
Ned Yost, Royals Radio
GH: I think this grumbled response was to a question from Karen Kornacki. Not even Korny can soften up ‘ol Nedley.

“Ned Yost played by Nick Nolte. That’s what I came up with.”
Johnny Kane, TV 9 sports anchor, as he and Josh Klingler tried to cast the Royals 2014 season as a movie, 610 AM

“Mike Moustakas played by Mike Tyson. That’s what I came up with.”
Johnny Kane, 610 AM
GH: Moose played by Tyson? Tats gone wild!

[email protected] and Twitter @greghall24


About Greg Hall

Software guy who has been writing my Off The Couch column in KC newspapers, publications and websites since 1994. Has been bounced from some of the finest media establishments this side of State Line Road. Dad first and everything else second...and there are a lot of everything elses.
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17 Responses to OTC: Has Kansas City Embraced Royals Fever Yet? / TV 9’s Johnny Kane Casts The Royals Movie

  1. Kyle says:

    Now ESPN has picked up the Aug 31 game against Cleveland for Sunday Night Baseball. Honestly cannot remember the last time SNB was at Kauffmann. Possibly a decade or so ago?

  2. Jim says:

    At 53 years old, put me in the “no they won’t make it” category. Damn, I want to be wrong! This second half has been a BLAST to watch! But, I’m a Royals fan. I fear I’ve seen the end of this movie before.

    • mike t. says:

      at 62, I’m straddling between your camp and PV_Pathfinder’s below. I said that if the Royal’s take it to the Giants and A’s, they’re in the playoffs, if not the Division winner. they just proved to me that the spotlight and division lead can be on them and they didn’t wilt this time. but…there’s still time…

    • Alphonse Tooty says:

      Only 53? Never would have guessed that!

  3. PV_Pathfinder says:

    I guess I’m a half full glass, but it’s been so easy to crap on the Royals when they do poorly. That’s just been the MO for DECADES. But I will admit I’ve paid much closer attention over the last month or so. Throw in the story of the guy coming from Korea to see them and the team gets on a hot streak at the same time and you have a pretty engaging story. We’ve already bought tickets for a late September game against Detroit, because if both teams hold serve, that could have huge playoff implications. If that’s the case, at the ripe old age of 41, I could be going to the first truly meaningful Royals game of my life.

  4. Java Man says:

    I want to know what Hot Carl thinks about the Royals chances for post season play.

  5. The Independent Rage says:

    Brock Lesnar as Salvador Perez; Tom Gordon as Alex Gordon; Sean Astin as Billy Butler; and Ken Jeong as Nori Aoki. That’s what I came up with.

  6. red says:

    TJ is like fescoe in that he realizes being outrageous is one way to succeed (KK) but hasn’t figured out how to make the take seem serious. The border patrol guys abuse him on his dumber takes to the point its a little uncomfortable.

  7. Tigerpiper says:

    Does anyone think of Willingham as the Royal’s mini-Adam Dunn? I hope Hosmer doesn’t take him into the film room to teach him how to climb the ladder on fast balls.

  8. Wait Staff says:

    A couple of things:

    1) Talking Royals is infectious. On the way home from Colorado, I ran into a fellow Royals fan (as evidenced by the shirt he was wearing) in Limon, CO and spent a few minutes talking Royals with ‘Bob from Prairie Village.’ Pretty cool.

    2) Watching the highlights from yesterday’s game on MLBTV the 7th inning reminded me of the Running Royals from the ’70s and ’80s (I’m 44). Seeing Dyson and Aoki flying around the bases on Aoki’s triple followed by Escobar’s scoring sprint from first on Butler’s single was so cool to see. No lie, it gave me shivers.

  9. Herb says:

    Who plays SungWoo in the movie? Also Hot Carl is off looking for Hawkchief…

  10. Sirr Parker says:

    Just so you know, Cain picked his hand off the bag to try to avoid being spiked by Josh Donaldson, who was about to step on his bare hand at the bag (or so Cain thought). A dumb move, as it almost cost the Royals an out, but I can’t say as I blame him. He thought a 220-lb dude was about to step on his exposed hand with metal spikes. I would have probably tried to move my hand too.

  11. Juan Pablo says:

    OTC: Has Kansas City Embraced Royals Fever Yet?
    By the amount of comments and mediocre attendance for the last few games I would say no.

    I wonder if the Royals will sell out their playoff games. I don’t see a lot of people paying about $60-$100 a seat.

  12. Harry Balczak says:

    Let’s see if the hitting can keep up. Dayton Moore seems to think it is possible to win with way below league average hitting. We will see…

  13. mike says:


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