Next year’s expectations of the Kansas City Royals might be at an all-time high.
When was the last time you have been so excited for the Royals’ season to start?
For me, the answer is never.
After the Royals’ last winning season in 2003, I could not wait for Opening Day 2004 to arrive. This time around, I would multiply that by about 10. The general feel from the Kansas City area is that most people would agree.
The Royals are getting some positive national media attention for the first time in a long time. Not that that really matters to the team in general, but it helps create an even larger local buzz. Add that with the fact that Alex Gordon won his first ever Gold Glove award and Eric Hosmer (although he didn’t win the award) is considered the rookie with the brightest future of anyone in the Majors. With all those things, you’ve got a recipe for a level of excitement not rivaled by any other Royals team for over 20 years.
I cringe every time anyone says that the Royals are still a year away from really contending. It’s probably a pretty good assessment of the team, however. They still have a few pieces to fill in and some experience to gain.
But with all the buzz and anticipation, it’s impossible for me (and probably many, many others) to think the Royals can’t compete in the AL Central next year.
We all might need to curb our enthusiasm for a while because 2013 could be the time for the Royals to finally get over the hump. 2012 could be another 70-win season like this year’s campaign and they could miss out on the playoffs for the 26th straight season.
On the other hand, it’s more fun to believe that next year will be that year when they make a magical run to the postseason.
I’m going to go ahead and stick with that second option.
Royals Tweet of the Week
From the man himself, Eric Hosmer. Showed a lot of class and pride.