Sunday, April 5, 2015


Royals Baseball Predictions, Spring 2015

As in years past, there will be no "The Next George Brett."  There have been a few The Next George Bretts, though not as many as there have been The Next Bob Dylans.  Some of them, like Mr. Damon and Mr. Gordon, turned into themselves.  Steve Forbert turned into himself after being The Next Bob Dylan.  That was good too. George Brett and Bob Dylan are still great at being themselves.  A first baseman whose last name begins with "H" and who wears a mohawk like a 9-year old playing paintball, could turn into himself this year. 

I will sit out at the K and feel blessed that I am in Kansas City, watching my team the way I used to as a kid, win or lose.

I will wager the purchase of a nacho helmet in order to conjure a clutch hit the way I did successfully last year.  Escobar hit the double, and I bought the nacho helmet for the group.

The Royals will average .35 to .60 more runs per game.  The metric of a quality start will continue to change: somewhere between five and six innings will do.  This will prevent injuries, and the dreaded "dead arm" that also afflicts tavern poets all over the globe.  The bullpen strategy that was successful last year will change to include a 6th Inning Cyborg, and lead the way in changing how pitching staffs are managed. Successful starting pitchers will be successful for more than three or four years, and suffer fewer injuries and syndromes like "dead arm," which can turn them into embittered tavern poets.  "Dead arm" is surely code for "we wore this guy out after signing him for 8 million dollars a year."

I will tailgate for the first time, consuming grilled meats and relaxing beverages in the parking lot of the K.  Friends do not believe that I have not seen The Godfather II, or A Clockwork Orange, or tailgated.  I have done none of those three things. 

What can't be accounted for is the experience of 2014 and how that will hold together the current core and change the long term culture of the team.  This team could win five to seven more games but not achieve what they did last year.  The schizoid paranoia hundreds of thousands of Royals fans have been trained to suffer has somewhat been healed.  There are some signs that the entire country is in love with the team.  I have melted down off and online about the team in recent years but now trust the instincts of the general manager and manager far more.  I feel they have been vindicated.  The franchise player we may not want to lose at the end of his current contract may be the current general manager.  Someone may want to hire him to work with and manage a King Tut type budget.

With free Google Fiber at our house, I will not pay for Google TV just to watch the Royals.  I will listen to them on the radio a bunch, go to Mike's Tavern and to Scot's house, and plan on spending the $130/month I would spend on Google TV on actual games at the K. 

The beard factor will get worse, especially for inconsistent pitchers with ERAs over 5. 

Players will essentially wrap or enfold their spikes in the drag-ass cuffs of their pants, until finally an equipment manager hires a children's pajama company to design footsy pants with tough vinyl soles, machine-routed to accepts the spike pattern of a players particular shoe and otherwise cover the shoe.  The pants may even come with the shoes sewn into them.  By the time this trend consolidates, plumber's butt and handlebar moustaches will be the new thing.  The first intentional plumber's butt flasher will be fined, but the second will be a really good player and they'll let it pass. 

Bob Dylan has been good at still being himself for almost two decades:

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