OTC: Mellinger Drops Timely Bomb On Royals Questioning KC’s Love For Their 30-years Of Mediocrity

“Catch someone with the Royals in the right mood on the right day and you’ll hear something that’s at the heart of a complicated relationship between a longtime losing franchise and the fans who care about it. ‘We get more love outside of Kansas City than we do here,’ they say.”
Sam Mellinger, in his Sunday column in The Kansas City Star
GH: This was a bombshell of a quote in Mellinger’s Sunday column. Talk about hitting a nerve. You want to get the Royals’ fan base exercised, excited and thoroughly pissed off? Have the organization question why the fans of a team that hasn’t threated to see the postseason now for 29 years don’t love them more than they do. Read on.

“As a fan, I don’t need to be questioned why I’m not on board with this team.”
Soren Petro, 810 AM

“If folks around baseball can see it, with no rooting interest in the Royals, why can’t more of Kansas City get behind its best baseball team since the strike? Why is every loss taken by a significant (or, at least, significantly loud) portion of the fan base as doom? How did Kansas City turn from a passionate and confident baseball town to a passionate and fatalistic baseball town? ”
Sam Mellinger, The Kansas City Star
GH: Let’s look at this quote with a bit more scrutiny. Mellinger attaches it to no Royals’ official by name. He does place the comment in quotes but he is less than direct in letting us know whether this is an exact quote from someone in the Royals’ organization or simply an opinion he’s been told by those in power. The timing of this column is also a shot to the knees of the Royals. The Star runs it the same weekend the Tigers are disemboweling the Royals during a three-game sweep at The K. The Royals just are masters of poor timing. This smelled like “Our Time” all over again.  

“But what (the Royals) don’t understand is that everything done by Dayton Moore and Ned Yost and Eric Hosmer is seen through battered memories clouded with visions of Runelvys Hernandez and Calvin Pickering and Roscoe Crosby. That’s just reality. If a segment of Royals fans are stir crazy, they’ve been driven that way by a team that’s finished in last place eight times and above .500 just twice in two decades.”
Sam Mellinger, The Kansas City Star
GH: This was as strong as Mellinger got in his column when it came to taking on the Royals’ hallucinations that the fans should love them more. Craig Brown of SBNation.com did it far, far, better. Read on.

“Apparently, some Royals ‘officials’ are hopelessly out of touch with reality. … The Royals won 86 games last year and were in the mix for the postseason deep into September. Yes, things are better. Do you want a cookie?”
Craig Brown, writer, reacting to Mellinger’s column, SBNation.com
GH: I love the “cookie” line. It just fits so well with this misguided bunch of Royals.

“A few games over .500 is not getting to the summit. You have not done enough to get the benefit of the doubt – AND THEN DO MORE!”
Soren Petro, 810 AM

“You want our trust? Tell me, Royals ‘officials,’ what exactly have you done to earn our trust? We’ve been burned before. We’ve been burned by you, in fact. Our memories are long. Our patience is thin. I’ll ask again, Royals ‘officials,’ what have you done to earn our trust? If we’re being totally honest here, Royals ‘officials,’ this whine about the fans not giving you credit for what you have done is yet another example of how horribly out of touch you are with this fan base. Forced marriages don’t seem to work. We don’t understand you and you sure as hell don’t understand us. To think that one winning season out of eight will wash away all the garbage is misguided. You made far too many mistakes and took far too long to get to the magical .500 mark.”
Craig Brown, writer, SBNation.com
GH: This is all so obvious to me and likely you – and every other right-thinking Royals fan. Dayton and Ned want us to treat them like St. Louis treats the Cardinals all while they treat us like we should be ecstatic they’ve given us a bowl of sour porridge. More please.

“Detroit came in here red hot.”
Ned Yost, attempting to explain the Tigers’ three-game sweep, 810 AM
GH: The Tigers came into Kansas City on Friday night on the heels of a “torrid” two-game winning streak. That’s not even a streak according to Manager Lou Brown of the movie, Major League. It’s called “two in a row.”

“You know what fans want? The truth. And accountability. Your team just crapped their pants at home against the club that is the prohibitive favorites in the AL Central. And you can damn well bet we’re not going to hear a peep from Royals ‘officials.’ You hired a pair of broadcasters who spend more time apologizing for what we just saw than actually describing the action. Poor performance from certain former top prospects is rewarded with another day in the major leagues. Quit trying to hide your mistakes. A former president would tell you the cover-up is worse than the crime.”
Craig Brown, writer, SBNation.com
GH: This is just brilliant, to-the-point stuff. THIS is what the Royals need to hear, read and digest. Don’t tell me you’ve turned the corner – only to find another head-on collision.

“But you do expect the team to compete. Instead, the Royals laid down, while dropping a cherry on top of this disgraceful sundae of a series. Not only did the Tigers sweep the Royals, the Royals failed to even compete with the Tigers. All of this at home. This is what happens when a horrendous lineup only gets average starting pitching help from their rotation. It is hard to say if it’s the talent in this lineup, the attitude of this line up, or the strategic approach employed by this line up that’s making it so horrible. What’s not hard to say? As it’s now constructed, as it’s now working, this lineup does not compete for the division, and will be lucky to hang in the Wild Card Race.”
Ed Connealy, KingsofKauffman.com
GH: The three games against the Tigers at The K were over early. Real early. They were never competitive. With all that is riding on Shields and this season, this was as bad a weekend for the Royals as I can remember in some years.

“When you’ve tried the hug, it’s time to go to the foot. There needs to be some accountability.”
Soren Petro, 810 AM

“I love this team. I so badly want them to succeed. I remember the good times and I remember the bad. I enjoyed last season – post All-Star break and got a kick out of September. I’m ready for a quality team and consistent winning baseball. It can be done. Get to work.”
Craig Brown, writer, SBNation.com
GH: Brown nails it again. Get to work.

“I can’t agree with you more about the performance on the field last night. It was
atrocious. It was a perfect night right up until we kicked off. … I absolutely agree with the standard that you hold us to. If that’s the sort of stuff we’re going to put on the field, people shouldn’t come out and watch. Period. It was bad.”
Robb Heineman, member of Sporting Kansas City’s ownership group, responding to criticism from Kevin Kietzman after Sportings’ loss in their opener back in 2011, 810 AM
GH: I wrote the following back in June 2011 after hearing Robb’s call to Kietzman: Heineman was listening to KK’s afternoon show and called in to respond to Kietzman’s critical comments about his team. It was the kind of stuff you NEVER hear from a representative of a professional franchise, let alone one of the owners. Refreshing isn’t a strong enough word to describe Heineman’s reaction to media criticism. How about ground-breaking and inspiring?

“I can just tell you that it won’t be for lack of effort. We will do everything we can to get this thing righted.”
Robb Heineman, responding to Kietzman’s question of what he was going to do about fixing his team, 810 AM
GH: Are you listening Royals? This is how you respond to your fans. If David Glass doesn’t want to sell the team, he could at least hire Heineman as a consultant on how to treat your city and your fans.

[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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45 Responses to OTC: Mellinger Drops Timely Bomb On Royals Questioning KC’s Love For Their 30-years Of Mediocrity

  1. Tigerpiper says:

    The reason Theo Epstein loves the Royals is they’re a great opponent and the good old boy network. Never know where you’ll need a job next, so don’t trash your future boss. It reminds me of when Lou Holtz would talk up Navy as a really good football team the week before playing Notre Dame.

    • Bob says:

      Always be wary of coaches/executives from other teams praising your organization.

      Every other fanbase spoke so highly of the man Turner Gill was. Doc Sadler was just the best “X and O coach” around. Kim Anderson is such a stand up guy who will do it “the right way.”

      Remember Jim Leyland talking about how great Kyle Davies was after his teams lit us up? And then the Royals, amazingly, using those quotes to prove Davies deserved more chances?

      Praise from other teams you compete against, and that need to beat you, should never be taken seriously.

      • Joe Blow says:

        Where is the proof that’s why the Royals kept running Davies out there? Other than Ozzie Guillen getting pissed about being beat by Bruce Chen, nobody from another team is going to publicly say, “That pitcher was horseshit! We fuckin killed the ball tonight!”

        • fiddlestix says:

          Here you go, Joe Blow – http://kingsofkauffman.com/2011/07/24/rose-colored-glasses/

          • Joe Blow says:

            That’s bullshit. He’s not saying they kept pitching Kyle Davies because other teams said he was good, they kept pitching him because he had the physical talents to succeed. That’s even what Leyland was saying. He just never put it together..

            • Joe Blow says:

              Leyland also said:

              “I may be exaggerating,” Leyland said. “I might be going out on a limb, but I believe this with all my heart: I think he has a chance to be a star. Duffy, I really like him a lot. He’s got a lot of potential, and you’ll never know if it will play for sure. But he’s a baby left-hander who’s really, really good.”

              Does that mean we should drop Duffy, too, because in reality that means he sucks?

              • Bob says:

                Danny Duffy is your comeback here?

                Sure, get rid of him. He’s never going to be a difference maker here.

                #fireeverybody

                • Joe Blow says:

                  Do you understand the point? Opponents always talk up everybody, whether they sucked or not.

                  But most commenters and bloggers apparently don’t understand baseball speak, and make up ridiculous shit about what they want to believe, rather than what is true..

                  • Bob says:

                    I think Moore did believe Leyland. Either that or he’s a tool for bringing up what Leyland said in an interview.

                    Hope you’re having fun being an apologist for this turd regime, one that’s had more than enough time to turn things around here.

                    • Joe Blow says:

                      It’s better than being a parrot who just caws the same fuckin thing over, and over, and over, and over, and over…

  2. mike t. says:

    i’m not the biggest baseball fan, never have been. but like so many others, I want to root for the Royals and see them do well. i’m also one of those that, if the team played well consistently, I might actually make some effort, spend some hard-earned cash, and GO to the stadium. i’m sure there are several thousand more like me out there… just what the Royals want, right?

    if the ‘officials’ actually that attitude, then piss on’em. you get what you earn.

  3. JP says:

    Craig Brown summed up our thoughts, and that “You want a Cookie” remark for finishing 10 games over .500 and no postseason is a classic. I wish Mellinger would write more of these types of columns, as they echoed the truth, and if the Royals want the fans back in droves, win some damn games and contend every year, not one out of ten years. The Royals came back to earth and reality this weekend. The truth is this franchise strives for mediocrity only, not greatness. That is why you see ticker tape parades around the K for a winning season. Dave and Dan Glass are only concerned with the bottom line, not wins and losses.

    As for this weekend, the Tigers came in and took this series seriously. They made a statement and the Royals took it as no big deal Very bad signs, and the Royals were outscored, outhit, outdefensed, and out managed (OK with Yost, that happens every series).

  4. Mike says:

    I made this point on Twitter over the weekend: What was so prohibitive about the Royals re-signing George Kottaras? (Especially in light of Brett Hayes’ issues)
    Kottaras led the Royals in OBP last year, which would be awesome in a year where the team’s ability to get guys on base is pathetic. Further, it appeared that Kottaras worked well with the pitchers, and could frame, and catch, pitches that would benefit his battery-mate. So, why did KC not re-up him? Was he Arb-eligible? Was he too high-priced? If it only was going to cost $1 million to bring him back, then the Royals invited a clusterfuck yet again to player acquisition.
    So now we have a catcher that by all appearances looks like an inferior alternative to the backup C that was here last year, and so now the team will risk a greater chance of burning up Salvy because of it. Nice fucking job, Royals.
    Oh, and remember, clubhouse culture doesn’t mean a goddamned thing if you can’t win. You know what is a good clubhouse culture? Getting a stupid hit when it matters.

    • Mike says:

      OH MY GOD KIETZMAN, SHUT THE FUCK UP ABOUT THE STADIUM ALREADY!!!

      Greg, KK is going all revisionist history again. He cites three factors why SKC is more ‘popular’ than the Royals, in an argument of ownership. His first two:
      1. winning. No shit, KK?
      2. Stadium. SKC built a new stadium, while the Royals didn’t.

      HOLY SHIT, KIETZMAN. Agenda much? SKC needed a stadium….THEY NEEDED A STADIUM. NEEEEEEEEEEDED. They were playing in a minor league park.
      The Royals didn’t ‘NEED’ a brand-new stadium. They did what was right for the community. Besides, I didn’t see your Johnson-county ass pitch in to help.

      What’s that? You’re constant browbeat of your stadium agenda means you’ll pay for a new downtown stadium yourself??? HEY EVERYONE!!! KK SAYS HE’LL PERSONALLY PAY FOR THE LAND ACQUISITION, INFRASTRUCTURE/UTILITY IMPROVEMENTS AND THE CONSTRUCTION, THE NECESSARY MASS TRANSIT UPGRADES, AND HE’LL FRONT THE MONEY NEEDED TO PUT A NEW STADIUM DOWNTOWN!!!!!! THE PROBLEM IS SOLVED!!!!!

      Second revisionist history: SKC’s first stadium option was the Bannister site. First and foremost. Village West wasn’t even in the picture, until the city of KCMO started to fumble around on the package of incentives to SKC on the land necessary for the team. That;s when the Unified Govt of Wyandotte County stepped in. Deal done.
      It wasn’t that SKC saw the ‘light’ and knew their future was in KCK. It was because KCMO leaders bungled the Bannister proposal so bad that SKC needed a Plan B, and Wyco jumped right in with a Plan B.

      God dammit, why do I leave my stream on right after Petro’s show???? Fuck. KK’s agenda-driven horseshit again leads off his Monday show, and I have to throw my phone across the room to quickly avoid his moronic blather.

      Let’s mimic KK’s first segment in caveman, shall we?
      “UUUNNNNNNGGGGGHHHH!!! Royals bad!! Royals owner bad!!! Soccer good! Sporting REAL GOOD!! Sporting did right things!! Sporting built new!! Royals didn’t build new!! That bad! Bad Royals! Owner bad…
      ….what? Mispronounce Theo Epstein name?? KK MAD!!!!! KK SMASH!!!!!

      • Kyle says:

        This coming from the guy who ripped SKC once the new name and re-branding was announced. He is a true genius in every sense of the word. Well done Mike.

      • mike t. says:

        nice rant! +1

  5. Java Man says:

    Jeez. I hope the Tigers at least left a $100 bill on the Royals nightstand.

  6. Johnny Utah says:

    No one under 35 remembers Royals post season. It’s not that hard to figure out why this town isn’t buying it. Show Me state.

  7. scoobbb says:

    After Donald Sterling is forced to sell the Clippers, how about forcing David Glass to sell the Royals? He is Sterling without the racism.

    I grew up with the heyday of the Royals. LOVED the team. Was at KU during the Bo Jackson era. It’s taken me about 30 years to stop being a fan, but after 30 years of a sucky team, it’s happened. It’s amazing to me that Royals management is whining about the fans as if the fans owe them something. That’s a joke. If Macy’s is my favorite store and every time I walk in they throw a bucket of crap on me, I will eventually stop going to Macy’s. Anyone who still goes to Royals games should receive a handwritten note and a Walmart gift card from the Glass family.

    • brett says:

      what i’d give for david glass to be caught on tape telling a hispanic joke.

      • scoobbb says:

        I hear V. Stiviano is looking for a new sugardaddy. She will have her iphone set on “record” at all times.

    • John Giardino says:

      In all honesty, as bad as David Glass has been as an owner I don’t think the current problems can all be laid on him. The front office is just not showing any sense of urgency and continue to coddle their “players”. DG has spent some money recently, and maybe he can be faulted for not putting more pressure on Dayton Moore. But at least it looks like he wants to win now.

  8. Maff says:

    We need to get David Glass to make a few racial slurs on the air so he will be forced to sell the Royals. Or disparaging comments about women, or something.

    Good baseball teams use their entire 25 man roster. The way Ned went 20 games or so without pinch hitting shows he has no clue how to develop roles for his players. It’s pretty much Billy, Moose and boys or bust. Looks like it is BUST.

    So what is Ned going to do now that Cain is back from DL and our most productive hitter the past 2-3 weeks (Dyson) has been in Cain’s position?

    It wouldn’t be a problem but when you have zero Pop in your lineup, you need every bit of offense you can muster. The chemistry on this team sucks. We don’t have enough good everyday starters and Ned and co. have done little to develop role players.

    I’d trade Shields and maybe a couple of veteran pitchers now and try and get a couple more Infante like guys. Let Billy start about 1/3 to 1/2 of the games and be a ROLE player. He is not good enough to be a featured guy. Probably true with Moose also.

    It appears the smartest guy in the room (Ned) and the tightwad crumudgeon (Glass) don’t get it, so forget this year. Enjoy Ventura for 3-4 more years before he moves on to a real contender. We need to quit pulling him in the 5th inning when up 2-0. When does football season begin?

  9. Joe Blow says:

    The weekend series against the Tigers was a disaster, but Royals bloggers like Craig Brown have been submitting those type of whiny, “all of the fans know better than the front office” entries for years. The “cookies” line is decades old and stale as can be..

  10. Bryon F says:

    After running through countless players, managers, and general managers the last 20 years it is definite that the true problem is one man – David ‘obsessed with winning’ Glass.

    That said, is so frustrating to sit through Ned Yost’s coddling management style. If one more player makes a hand gesture after hitting a single I am going to puke.

  11. Greg says:

    First of all, does anyone else think Dan “Danny Boy” Glass was in the room talking to Mellinger?

    Secondly, because no one with the Star is over 35 (it seems) they have no memory that when Ewing died in 1993, David Glass became the Chair of the Board. He ran it for eight plus years without owning them. David and Dan Glass do not get a pass for the 1994-2001 seasons.

    Third, it is because of Danny Boy that the Royals are locked into a 2006-era TV contract locally. Cincinnati gets at least 2-3 times what the Royals do for TV rights. But the village idiot has the Royals locked in until 2018 or so.

    Hey Royals front office, go f^%& yourself.

  12. Gavin says:

    I have a friend who is basically taking the Royals party line and I am taking the Craig Brown line. I’m sick of it, they’ve beaten me down, I remember when they were great, etc. Well, last season I refused to go “all in” because I just wasn’t going to emotionally invest in a team that I had no confidence had any ability to do anything other than cockpunch me at the end of the season. My friend was riding high because the team was finally having a decent season and he asked “What the hell do you want? A world Series?!” And I said “Yes. Yes, I do want a World Series. And what does it say about you that your expectations as a fan are that you don’t want one?”

    And for the team to pull out all of this non-stop whining and “Theo Epstein loves us and he’s a Baseball Man” only pisses me off more. Way to read a room, Royals.You want the benefit of the doubt, try not sucking for 30 odd years. Try not hitting your cutoff man in the back of the neck. Try not trotting out Sidney fucking Ponson as your opening day starter. I love you, Royals, but much like my parents love me, that doesn’t mean I didn’t piss them off A LOT.

    • Joe Blow says:

      Are you Joe Posnanski, Sam Mellinger, or a random Royals blogger? Because how many times can people trot out the fuckin “the cutoff man got hit in the back!” thing?! Let’s also mention how Chip Ambres let a lazy fly ball drop, or Kerry Robinson climbed the wall and had the ball land in the field, and all the stupid shit that gets repeated over and over and over again every year?

  13. The Independent Rage says:

    I’m not so sure about putting something in quotes that appears to be a sort of summary of similar sentiments that Mellinger’s heard from Royals people. I’m fine with him writing a single statement that accurately summarizes similar sentiments he’s heard out there, but I would only stick quotes around it if it was an actual verbatim quote from a specific person (even if the name can’t be used, as per such person).

  14. JS says:

    I do not and will not trust the Royals management as long as David Glass owns it. He bought it cheaply, starved it of talent and then handcuffed GM’s and Manager’s through the years with it. We owe him for “saving” the team for KC but that is about it. Yes, he has spent money recently but that does not absolve him for the past. I agree with other posts in saying that I wish Major League Baseball would force him out of ownership.

    • mike t. says:

      you’d think by now he’d be ready to sell. guess he wants something for dan to do?

      • Greg says:

        With an 85 IQ and limitless confidence, Dan Glass is dangerous. The dude would be homeless if his last name were anything else.

        • mike t. says:

          nah, he’d still have a trust fund. sometimes I dream just a little of what the royals would have been like these last 15 years or so if the consortium headed by Ken and George Brett had been successful in buying the team.

          • Joe Blow says:

            Kind of like the Diamondbacks without the ability to buy a championship team one year.

            • KV says:

              So we would have gone to the playoffs 5 times? Or maybe like 27 other teams that have managed to make the playoffs in the last 15 years, whiny bloggers and all?

      • Kyle R says:

        There’s a grandson too that’s in his late 20’s/early 30’s too.Get excited KC!

  15. Doug says:

    When the Royals built an “entertainment complex” in the outfield I knew things would not get any better. All of that was built to take your mind off of the horrific product on the field.

    • Joe Blow says:

      Most new or refurbished stadiums have that shit.

    • Tim says:

      And during this past weekend, I’ll bet a lot of people wouldn’t have minded seeing a couple of crazy ladies punching it out by the merry go round.

  16. geoknows says:

    The Royals haven’t played the Cubs in a gazillion years, nor will they play them in the foreseeable future, so your comment is pointless.

    • Stephen OToole says:

      The Royals played the Cubs in 2011. Get your facts straight before you start calling other people’s comments “pointless.”

      • Joe Blow says:

        They’re apparently never allowed to play at Wrigley, though..

        • John Giardino says:

          If the Royals and the Cubs played at Wrigley it would create a baseball sucktitude paradox. The results of which could cause a chain reaction of baseball ineptitude that would unravel the very fabric of the space-time continuum and destroy the entire universe!… Granted, that’s the worst-case scenario. The destruction however might be limited merely to our own galaxy.

  17. Kansas Jayhawk says:

    Nice to see you include the comments of Ed Connealy from Kings of Kauffman. He’s done some very solid work there and is a must read.

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