OTC: Royals Power Surge Silences Cardinals Twice In STL / Mellinger’s Readers Refuse To Blame Royals Players For Losses?

“I haven’t been any place so quiet since I visited Kutis (Funeral Homes).”
An Unnamed Cardinals team official, describing the St. Louis clubhouse following their 6-0 loss to the Royals Monday night, St. Louis Post Dispatch
GH: That quote has to make the Royals organization and fan base smile. There are few things better in day-to-day competition than shutting your opponent up. Literally. And in their own crib. Do people still say “crib” anymore?

“Nothing looks deader than a baseball team that’s not hitting. And the Cardinals, despite a rare turnabout Tuesday, aren’t hitting. Monday’s loss to a traditional bottom-feeder included three singles, two errors, two wild pitches and only three at-bats with a runner in scoring position.”
Joe Strauss, columnist, St. Louis Post Dispatch
GH: Okay, we might not like having the Royals diminished to being called “a traditional bottom-feeder” but we unfortunately resemble that moniker. All the more fun to beat the Redbirds twice in their brick nest.

“The Royals can salvage this thing, and if they do, the stories in October will be about how they overcame a slow start and major doubt and diversions from the script. But there’s not much reason for people outside the clubhouse to expect that to happen.”
Sam Mellinger, kansascity.com
GH: Some of baseball’s greatest stories are of the pennant drives in August and September that were able to overcome the sins of spring. Kansas City has never really done that. When the Royals were good they were in contention throughout the season. When they’ve been bad, well…we all know how quickly football season has arrived in this town the past 20 years.

“According to what seems like the majority of Twitter, my emails, and voicemails, the hitting coaches and manager are the problem, not the players. The last couple years have taught me a lot, among them this: when people talk about Kansas City being a good place to play, they usually talk about the nice ballpark, the convenience, being away from the spotlight of New York, and this being a good place to raise a family. Most of it is patronizing P.R., of course, but I wish they’d add something like: it’s a great place to play, because from what I can tell, if I suck and my name is not Moustakas or Butler, the fans will just blame the manager and coaches.”
Sam Mellinger, kansascity.com
GH: I am stunned by this revelation. Who are these folks who read Mellinger’s work in The Star and then wish to exonerate the Royals players – outside Butler and Moose? Sure, Yost is an arrogant small-ball freak who is never wrong but that sure doesn’t excuse the guys wearing the laundry. Are Mellinger’s readers that different from the Royals fans who comment here or that I follow on Twitter?

“@mellinger when do the Royals reach the Pioli-point, where I should start rooting for them to lose to ensure sweeping front-office changes?”
Grant in KC, @GrantsRants3, Twitter
GH: Mellinger properly gave Grant props for coining a new Kansas City phrase that is sure to become part of this city’s lore and possibly beyond – much like the Mendoza Line. How soon before SportsCenter is predicting the “Pioli Point” for teams from Seattle to Miami?

“I thought a couple of things (about the Chiefs drafting Georgia QB Aaron Murray). I thought it was great value for where they got (Murray in the fifth round) and I thought it was a great fit for Coach Reid’s offense. I think his skill set fits very nicely in this offense.” Daniel Jeremiah, NFL draft guru for The NFL Network, in an interview with The Border Patrol, 810 AM
GH: Fifth-round quarterbacks rarely turn out to be anything more than trivia questions in the NFL. But Murray is intriguing. I think he not only sticks but eventually starts here in Kansas City. 

“Looking at this group (of tight ends on the Chiefs Travis Kelce’s going to catch a lot of balls this year for the Chiefs. He’s going to be a sleeper.”
Daniel Jeremiah, on the Chiefs second-year tight end drafted in the third round last year out of Cincinnati, 810 AM
GH: I made a mental note to add Kelce to my “sleeper” fantasy football draft sheet. Me and just about everybody else who happened to hear TBP’s interview with Jeremiah. Anybody else already been contacted to secure their spot in their FF league? My email arrived last week. 

“With Alex (Smith’s) and Andy (Reid’s) leadership, I wouldn’t be surprised if (the Chiefs) went 10-6.”
Trent Green, in an interview Monday with Soren Petro, 810 AM
GH: Wow! I know Green is still doing the Chiefs preseason TV broadcasts but this prediction has more Rex Hudler in it than common sense. 

“It was rocky from the start. Having Mark Mangino as your head coach (at Kansas) was never smooth water. … He was the guy who orchestrated the (coaches leaving Kansas State) behind Bill Snyder’s back and he took the recruiting classes.”
Kevin Kietzman, on Mangino’s time at KU, 810 AM
GH: KK is never going to like Mangino or respect that he took one of the country’s worst college football programs to an Orange Bowl victory and had them ranked second in the nation in all three polls in 2007. Mangino also beat Kansas State and Nebraska regularly while he was at Kansas. I can see why a lot of Kansas fans miss the big guy. 

“What song should @cdotharrison have to sing if he loses his NBA Finals karaoke bet to @DannyParkins?”
@610SportsKC, Twitter
GH: Am I so out of touch to wonder what the hell 610 is doing with their programming? Fescoe’s show and The Drive seem to be focused on attracting listeners who care about dating and winning free tickets. 

“That (Deadspin.com story Harry Caray expensing his drinking as business expenses) reminds me of a former coworker. I won’t mention any names but he was ‘fortunate.’”
Bob Fescoe, 610 AM
GH: So Mr. “Fortunate” was into falsifying his business expenses? Can’t hide that cat piss with a well-placed ottoman. 

[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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52 Responses to OTC: Royals Power Surge Silences Cardinals Twice In STL / Mellinger’s Readers Refuse To Blame Royals Players For Losses?

  1. Jim says:

    Last night’s Royals/Redbirds game was my favorite of the year. Had a bit of everything and was a nice surprise after being down 4. Never thought that was going to happen with this offensively-retarded team.

    GH, did you happen to catch the USA today article where the guy made his predictions for the outcome of every single game for every single team and then predicted final records? he had the Chiefs at 4W-12L. Ouch!

    • david says:

      Doesn’t matter, we haven’t been to the playoffs in 28 years, Ken Harvey was once hit in the back with a cut off throw and Ned’s arrogant.

      • Ned says:

        I agree, the Royals suck.

      • BlackJack says:

        You forgot to add, the Royals cannot draft and develop a power hitter to save their lives, and they once took (drumroll) Luke Hochevar with the #1 overall pick, and Dayton Moore said last year, after missing out on the postseason, “in some small way, I feel like we already won the World Series”.

        • Java Man says:

          Don’t forget the Fountain Lady that rode her unicycle in the locker room shower!

          • Joe Blow says:

            I understand that Ken Harvey once got crushed by the tarp and Tony Pena performed emergency surgery to save his life, all while the players were eating cookies and milk in the dugout instead of pounding tequila.

            • Java Man says:

              Does it shock anyone that Sal Perez has hit into twice as many double plays than Billy Butler this season?

  2. The Independent Rage says:

    If he was one who liked to get his drink on, then maybe those weren’t necessarily CAT piss stains that had to be covered up in Don Fortunate’s Adobe [allegedly]?

    • Greg Hall says:

      TIR,
      You have been killing me lately with these comedy drops! I almost knocked over my large McD’s drink laughing at this one. “Lose a Fortune…and gain a dry carpet!”

      • The Independent Rage says:

        The problem is that Fortune put himself out to pasture so long ago now, the young’uns have no idea what the hell we’re talking about!

        • thelaundry says:

          I remember Fortune very well. If ol’ Fortunato was a big drinker like Caray, he was doing it wrong. Harry was colorful, charismatic, unhinged and often oblivious to the game action. Fortune was just oblivious.

          • The Independent Rage says:

            Well stated. The highlight of Fortunate’s career may have been calling Comets games on TV in the 80s with Jack Harry, although even there he was bested on the radio by All-Star Rasslin’s Kevin Wall.

  3. Kyle R says:

    KU firing Mangino should be talked about amongst the dumbest decisions in college sports in past 20 years, when it comes to coaches. The fact that he wasn’t publicly reprimanded and maybe suspended a game or something, rather than outright firing the guy, is just amazing looking back on it five years later. And at KU itself, it’s quite possibly the dumbest coaching-related decision ever at the school, with the possible exception of forcing Phog Allen to retire because of a mandatory retirement age requirement by the state.

    As KU football fans (yes, there are still some), we’ve suffered through four miserable seasons and are again the butt of KSU and MU fans’ jokes, as we deserve to be, based on the results. If Mangino was still around, so many things could be different. What a damn shame. The sad irony of it is, Gary Pinkel’s DUI was probably as bad an incident as Mangino’s, but MU was smart enough to recognize what they had and rightly support the guy.

    • mike t. says:

      kyle, we really don’t know how serious those allegations of player abuse were or how far they went if all true. ku may have overreacted, but I tend to think they knew more than we did and probably acted appropriately. I liked mangino, loved the team nickname “flying manginos”, loved the fact ku was actually winning football games.. but if he was over-the-top abusive, he had to go.

      • RIchard Cranium says:

        Clearly you do not remember the circumstances of Mangino getting fired. He was canned because the AD HATED the man. He went on a witch hunt, and found a couple players that complained about his behavior (non-starters mind you). Then fired him. He had an issue with how he presented himself, and the fact that HE didn’t hire Mangino.

      • Kyle says:

        FIGHTING Mangino’s.

        • mike t. says:

          oops. stand corrected on both points. so, who here is really the dick head??

    • Gavin says:

      Well, first, KU didn’t have any choice when it came to letting go of Doc Allen. That mandatory retirement rule was put I place by a pro- KSU legislature with thud pose of getting rid of him.

      Second, while I agree that Mangino should have been given a reprimand and another chance (in other words, not fired) I’m not convinced he was going to have things humming along at the same high level that he did from 2007-2009. Maybe, but his last team wasn’t bowl eligible and his recruiting had taken a bit of a dive because he stopped going after three-star guys and coaching ’em up (like Reesing) and riskier guys that he could (barely, sometimes) control (like Talib) and he started going after four and five star guys that were also being chased by schools like OU and Nebraska. And he was missing. I don’t blame him for wanting those guys, but he seemed to have forgotten what got him there. And I don’t know that he was going to get back. Maybe.

    • P says:

      I look for ISU to make some noise in the Big 12 with Mangino on staff. That was a huge upgrade for their offense.

      Man, KK takes any slight to his alma mater very personally. He “orchestrated” the move of the coaches…ok. Hey man, when your organization is successful, your competitors want your people. It’s a pretty basic concept.

      Royals…once again, they keep their fans juuuuuust hanging in there. If they can get on a 10-12 game tear here in the very near future things would really smooth out and everyone would be back on the wagon.

  4. Renton says:

    1984 and especially 1985, as I remember, were both years where the Royals surged to make the playoffs late.

  5. Steve says:

    I agree with the comment about Mellinger. Who isn’t blaming the players? Aside from Gordon and Cain, in the lineup at least, who is consistently getting the job done? Only the crazy people must contact Mellinger because as much as I can’t stand Yost sometimes, he’s not the biggest problem with this team.

  6. matt3579 says:

    “GH: Some of baseball’s greatest stories are of the pennant drives in August and September that were able to overcome the sins of spring. Kansas City has never really done that. When the Royals were good they were in contention throughout the season…”

    In 1985, after 82 games, the Royals were 40-42. I wouldn’t necessarily call that in contention all year.

  7. Phaedrus says:

    It’s funny reading the St Louis columnist bemoaning a game where the Cardinals had 3 singles, 2 errors, and only 3 at-bats with runners in scoring position.

    That could describe probably 50% of the Royals’ games this season. At yet we’re stuck with Lee Judge telling us how learning to bunt with 2 strikes can be a real weapon….

  8. randyraley says:

    After not seeing the Royals all year and watching the last two beat downs in St. Louis…they look pretty good to me. Meanwhile, in St. Louis, the masses are restless…

    • Greg Hall says:

      Randy, The Cards have looked very “Blue” the last two nights.

    • BlackJack says:

      Yeah, well, something tells me Royals fans still won’t be able to brag “scoreboard!” until they beat the Cardinals, like 30 more times and win a couple World Series.

      • PG2 (@griney55) says:

        Beating the Cardinals 30 more times won’t matter. It’s the couple of WS wins I’d rather see.

    • b12 says:

      @randy. I know the natives are restless or grumbling or whatever in STL. It’s a different feel this year. I think the Cardinals miss Beltran in a big way.

      Take what you saw out of the Royals in the first 5 innings of each game Monday and Tuesday night, and it’s a microcosm of the season so far. Excellent pitching, with no hitting to back it up…or bombs away on the mound, with not enough hitting to overcome it.

      Royals fans are just generally pissed off right now. It’s been 20 years of shitty baseball. For a long time, people were just happy to still have the Royals in town, and live off the memories of the good old days.

      Now it’s so far gone, we can’t remember good baseball here…it’s time for Dayton and grumpy ass Ned to deliver on the promises we been made…or find the elusive third baseman tree.

  9. nick says:

    Every time a non-KU fan talks about the Orange Bowl year, they’re sure to remind everybody that:

    – KU didn’t play OU.
    – Or Texas.
    – Prince was coaching KSU.
    – A&M, Buffaloes and Cowboys (all on the road) were down that year.
    – Nebraska was down.
    – Missouri beat KU ( (in a game where the Jayhawks uncharacteristically made sloppy mistakes and spotted MU a 14-0 halftime lead).

    Regardless, when I go over to Lawrence, I can look at a big bowl trophy with a bunch or oranges in it. Says KU beat Virginia Tech 24-21.

    (Yeah. I know. I’m sure that #5 Virginia Tech team was down also.)

    • P says:

      That KU team was legit. They had some ballers.

    • Mrpink says:

      Also, didn’t the KU AD (I refuse to say his name) throw a whole bunch of money to lock in a spot? Not that there’ s anything wrong with that…but as a KU fan I kinda wish maybe they’d saved some dough to remove the track at Memorial

      • Kyle R says:

        Whether it was actually money or just Lew Perkins being better at playing the silly BCS game than Mike Alden is, is a mystery for the ages. Mizzou was a damn good time that year and so was KU. That was such a fun year on both sides and that day at Arrowhead maybe the best live sporting event I’ve ever been to. So much fun.

    • Greg says:

      Before beating Va tech their best win was over 6-6 Oklahoma state. That is a fact.

    • Greg says:

      Oh and also Missouri led 28-7 early in the fourth quarter. So the “spotting” comment doesn’t mix with reality. ku was beaten soundly. Fourth quarter was prevent defensive and Missouri settling for field goals.

      • Steve says:

        Exactly. Maybe KU made “uncharacteristic” mistakes because they were playing a superior team.

        • Gale Sayers says:

          Missouri was certainly mentally tougher. KU’s talent that year was relatively equal that year, but completely shit the bed in that game.

    • Matt says:

      Missouri led 28-7 in the fourth quarter. How is that “spotting a lead?” If anything, Missouri clearly let off the gas both offensively and defensively.

      KU’s defense had no way to stop Chase Daniel unless the officials stopped them. You claim KU was uncharacteristically sloppy? MU was the least penalized team in the nation and suddenly was plagued with numerous head-scratching personal fouls?

      Let’s call a spade a spade. Both teams were good that year, but the Tigers were better. It is a fact that KU only had one quality win, against VaTech, a team that didn’t have quality wins themselves (6-6 OSU team).

      KU played no team except MU and NU who had any semblance of a passing offense. Both teams shredded the KU secondary.

      Todd Reesing was a hell of a player and KU caught lightning in a bottle that year and somewhat the next. But all the KU fans I work with were expecting and waiting for the Orange Bowl to pay huge recruiting dividends. It didn’t because, while the program had the appearance of success, it was easily destroyed because it had no roots (like “pretty” weeds).

      Enjoy your Orange Bowl win. We have won the Orange Bowl before too.

      • Juan Pablo says:

        That KU team beat Nebraska 76-39, I remember the 3rd string playing in the 4th quarter , KU also beat Baylor 58-10,OK st 43-28 ISU 45-7. It was a good team .
        The problem is the BCS bowls were around for 15 years and KU won one.
        MU never went to one in 15 years, KSU never won one. If KSU and MU are so great in football why did they not win one in 15 years.

        • Guy Who Says What Others Think says:

          The BCS Bowls have been around alot longer than 15 years, swifty. What, you thought the Orange Bowl, Sugar Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, Rose Bowl all just showed up 15 years ago? Just because the geniuses at the NCAA decided to group them together and call them BCS bowls doesn’t make them different or more (or less) important than they had been previously. And I think I can speak for all KSU and MU fans when I say we wouldn’t trade our respective football programs level of success for KU’s.

          • Juan Pablo says:

            Wining a BCS bowls represent a good achievement on the national level for the last 15 years. Wining a BCS bowl is like going to a final four. it is a nice achieved.
            MU and KSU not wining one just shows they have had little national success in the last 15 years. KSU and MU win a lot of games but choke in the big ones. Name the greatest wins for MU and KSU the last 15 years??

            • Kyle R says:

              Seriously? I’m a KU fan and can’t defend a word of that post. MIzzou and KSU both have far better football programs than KU does the past 15 years – 2007 was a perfect storm and I loved it, but that’s not something KU will repeat anytime soon.

              By your logic, UConn has a far better basketball program than KU the past 15 years too, since they’ve won more titles, even though KU’s total wins are way higher, not to mention conference titles. Agree?

  10. Dancin Wal-Mart Dave says:

    Don’t forget the Yankees are in town this weekend.

  11. BiBi Jones says:

    “What song should @cdotharrison have to sing if he loses his NBA Finals karaoke bet to @DannyParkins?”
    @610SportsKC, Twitter
    GH: Am I so out of touch to wonder what the hell 610 is doing with their programming? Fescoe’s show and The Drive seem to be focused on attracting listeners who care about dating and winning free tickets.

    Yeah, its obvious that 610 is moving towards BroTalk instead of pure sports talk. They aren’t going after the 55+ Demographic. Hell, I’m only 40 and at times their show is too young for me.

  12. Herb says:

    Just so we’re clear: Everyone expenses their alcohol who can.

    • Prudence says:

      This is true; its acceptable to have a couple drinks with dinner. And if you have a couple more…non-itemized receipt.

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