There is a phrase used to refer to when something is new and improved in which someone states “These aren’t your father’s …..” Well, in the case of the Kansas City Royals, that phrase may not be accurate. Since it has been roughly a generation since the Royals have been perennial contenders, it would be best if the Royals teams going forward were closer to the teams our fathers watched.
At this point, at least according to Buster Olney’s series on the top ten teams in baseball (insider required for links) that may well be the case. The Royals are considered to have the second best defense, the third best bullpen and the ninth best lineup in baseball. Overall, based on Olney’s projections, that makes the Royals the ninth best team thus far as we head into the new year.
With a month and a half before Spring Training starts, and approximately three months until Opening Day, there is still plenty of time for these rankings to change. Top free agents such as Masahiro Tanaka, Ervin Santana and Matt Garza are available and can change the landscape of which teams are considered to be among the top ballclubs next season in an instant. However, even if these rankings are entirely subjective and subject to change in an instant, it certainly feels good to see the Royals sitting in the top ten teams thus far in the offseason.
That being said, these rankings mean absolutely nothing at this point. Injuries, a lack of production from key players and free agency can make these rankings entirely irrelevant. Yet, there is a feeling of optimism around the Royals that has not been there for years. Maybe, just maybe, the experts are correct and this will finally be the year that the Royals break through.
These Royals could well be like your father’s Royals teams. And that may be some of the best news that Royals fans have had in a long time.
Tags: Kansas City Royals