Jul 20, 2013; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Royals general manager Dayton Moore (left) and owner David Glass watch the Detroit Tigers during batting practice before the game at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

An Open Letter to David Glass


Mr. David Glass,

You do not know us at all, but we are the fans of your Kansas City Royals. Despite your best efforts to turn the team into nothing more than a personal ATM, we have remained fans. We remained loyal to the Royals even after virtually all of their good, young talent was sent away for practically nothing. Even though the Royals had become a punchline around the country, we continued to support them.

Now, our faith is being rewarded. The Royals are coming off their best season since 1989, and are considered to be the biggest threat to seize the American League Central from the Detroit Tigers. Playoff baseball, which seemed like a pipe dream even two years ago, may soon be a reality.

Mr. Glass, we know that you have already increased the Royals payroll to record levels. Allowing Dayton Moore to sign Omar Infante and Jason Vargas, in addition to his trade for Norichika Aoki, have helped fill several of the holes on the roster. Should Eric Hosmer, Billy Butler and Salvador Perez perform at their expected levels, then the Royals should be serious contenders this season.

However, there is still work to be done. The Royals need another starter. Bringing back Ervin Santana or defying expectations and signing Masahiro Tanaka would certainly help. While you are signing starting pitching, giving James Shields an extension to keep him in Kansas City beyond this season should also be on the list. This way, the Royals young starters will have a mentor during their formative years at the major league level, and the trading of Wil Myers will not be questioned nearly as much.

Yes, these moves would require an additional expenditure on your part. However, you could make that money back in spades. Having a full Kauffman Stadium will increase your bottom line, and should the Royals finally reach the postseason once again, think of how much more revenue you could make!

Both you and the Royals have come a long way in the past few years, but there are still a couple more steps to take. And so, Mr. Glass, we ask you to open your checkbook once again. Think of the fans. Think of the excitement of a filled to capacity Kauffman Stadium. And think of the future revenue that you could receive with the Royals in the postseason.

Sincerely,

Royals fans

Tags: Kansas City Royals

  • jimfetterolf

    Kansas City does lack a Japanese community, so Tanaka is probably impossible. Agree on extending Shields, but takes two to tango, just as it would for Santana, whose 3.0fW is much easier to replace than Shields. I’m good with the team now and would concentrate on extensions at this point.

    • Dave Hill

      Shields seems to be open to an extension, so it’s up to the Royals now. Hopefully, they can get something done soon.

      • jimfetterolf

        That’s what Shields says, but I doubt much happens ’til after at least Tanaka and Garza set the market. I’ld rather extend Shields three extra than Erv for four and take my chances with the rest of the staff and prospects.

        • unclejesse40

          While I would love to see Shields get extended I have a hard time believing that he would only take three years when once he gets past this season will be one of if not the hottest commodity on the open market and can get probably 5 years or more of crazy high money. If I was Shields and I didn’t have an injury history, I think I would gamble on another good healthy season and have a big pay day in a year.

          • jimfetterolf

            You are likely right, in which case we either trade him at the ASB or
            make a QO and get the draft pick. Take the money saved and make a
            serious push for Hosmer, Duffy, maybe even Ventura during spring
            training. Eventually the home grown talent has to take over and become
            grizzled veterans, so might as well just jump in :)

  • Ed Connealy

    If one or two of Duffy, Ventura, or Zimmer blossom, this team can make noise in September and October. That could happen. God I hope it happens. BUT….considering Glass’s return on his initial investment when buying the team, and the horrendous job he did as an owner for the first decade …why not pony up for that one last, crucial piece that is a second starter? Considering Shields is not extended past this season, this is a huge year. They are so close. Not the season to cross your fingers. Fingers crossed, Ed

  • cardsfanatik

    I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. The Royal’s need to call Boston about Jake Peavy. Boston doesn’t need him, especially if they make a move for Tanaka. Peavy is a fly-ball pitcher, like Erv, who would fare very well at the K. He is not the Jake Peavy of 5 years ago, but he is still a better bet to put #2 than Vargas or Guthrie. I do like Vargas and Guthrie, but then your rotation goes Shields, Peavy, Vargas, Guthrie, Duffy. That is not a bad rotation. That is actually a very solid rotation. Peavy’s option is not going to vest unless he pitches around 250 innings this year, that’s not gonna happen. Start extension talks with Shields NOW. Don’t wait for every over-hyped Tanaka to “Set the Market”. Beat the market. Tanaka may be a very fine pitcher, but noone knows what he is going to to at the MLB level. A small market team like the Royal’s need to be a little more aggressive when it comes to keeping their own. Shields may prefer to wait, but if the Royal’s continue to show him they are serious about winning, I can see him working with them, not saying take less money, but maybe defer some, or some other tricky contract thing they do. The Royal’s have to be creative, but I don’t want 2014 to be a one and done either. But as it sets right now, The Royal’s are one true starter shy of post-season. They have 4 spots locked imo, and Duffy is a question mark to me, you can’t go into the season with questions in Duffy and Davis/Hochever. Trade Hochever or Davis, then go to Boston and trade them a couple non blue chip, high upside minor leaguers for Peavy. You may have to take on a little salary in order to not send one of the top prospects, so be it. Then you can afford to give Zimmer and Ventura the time they need to truly be ready at AAA, and there is not quite as much pressure on Duffy. Then if around the All-Star break, Ventura is tearing it up, and Peavy is pitching ho-hum, flip Peavy to someone needing pitching. But if he is pitching anywhere near the Jake of old, ride him into October.

    • unclejesse40

      I agree with seeing what it would take to get Peavy in here. It seems to me that if the Royals make a name for themselves as the team that guys can come to and resurrect a career with a big ballpark and an excellent defense, then they really could see some interesting free agent signings every year. I would love to see guys signed every year for the #5 spot in the rotation that end up pitching like Santana did last year. Peavy could be that guy this year and so could James McDonald. McDonald reminds me a lot of Santana in the pitches he throws and the way he throws them. The big difference is that he doesn’t have the same percentage pitch selection breakdown which I think could easily be remedied by telling him to listen to Sal.

      • cardsfanatik

        I wouldn’t mind seeing McDonald either. He was lights out at times with Pittsburgh. If he could find consistency he could be a very good starter. I like it a lot better than the signing of Brad Penny I just read about. But I suppose that if Penny can find some form of his old self, he could be useful. Just see McDonald or Peavy to be better suited to what we need right now.

    • jimfetterolf

      MLBTR has Shields talking 6/147, Greinke money.

      • cardsfanatik

        Ya, I read that after I had posted this. Smh, I doubt Glass does that, but we’ll see, I don’t think Shields will get that kind of money on the open market anyway. I think they always start high. Even at 6/120, or 5/100, 4/80, that is still pushing what Glass normally does. I wouldn’t want to give him 6 years anyway. The Royal’s can’t afford to pay a pitcher 1/4 of their total salary. A position player MAYBE, but not a guy that only goes every 5 days. Any way you look at it though, the Royal’s can’t maintain their welfare type budget forever. It’s going to have to increase, if they want to even keep a team in KC. You can’t constantly put a 50 million dollar team on the field in a multi billion dollar industry and hope for any success. I don’t feel sorry for him, nor do I applaud him for spending money this year, I instead say “it’s about damn time”. Now they can’t back off. But my fear is, if they don’t win it all this year, Glass slides right back into the tight-ass put a minor league team on the field owner he has been for the last two decades. Glass has had this team since 1993, and has done nothing for its fanbase. If it never recovers, it will only be his fault. If Shields wants 6/147, he will probably get closer to that from another team than from what the Royal’s will do, which is sad, considering what they gave up to get him, one would think they would try to sign him at all costs.

        • jimfetterolf

          I could see an extension of maybe 3/80, $25m per year plus an extra $5m for ’14. He’ll be 32 this season and age is a bigger question than money.

          As for money, Royals still have low local media income, so will be at a disadvantage until the current deal ends. I read where the Phillies new deal generates $350m/year including ownership stake and the Dodgers are much higher than that. Royals current payroll looks like $94-ish million, so David Glass is paying what the talent is worth and has improved the team substantially from last year, losing Santana’s 3fW and gaining a lead off hitter, a real 2nd baseman, a younger Chen, and a platoon partner for 3rd. The progress of the three Young Guns will go a long way toward deciding whether Shields needs to be re-signed at all or if the draft pick, lower payroll, and rotation space are a better return.

          As for what the Royals gave up, still not sold on Myers being a top talent. We’re not talking Trout or Harper and we may be talking Hurdle or Frenchy. I still like the deal. Had the Royals kept Myers they would have been maybe an 80 win or less team last year and nobody would even been paying any attention to them now.

          • cardsfanatik

            I agree with your consensus on the trade. I just want them to keep trending upward. And in order to do that, a team needs a defined #1 starter. Even if the young guns come out firing, I’m not sure you want to lay that kind of pressure on them going into the ’15 season. I believe that keeping Shields for 3 more years makes a ton of sense.And I’m with you about Wil not being Harper or Trout, but I think Myers will be a very special player. At the time of the trade he was the hottest ticket, is what I meant by the statement of what they gave up. I am a firm believer that at the time of that trade, they should have asked for time to extend Shields before making the deal. Shields contract a year ago, whatever it may have been, would still be a bargain compared to what he will want this offseason. I am afraid that going forward, Glass is going to have to open the checkbook more to just remain competitive. He won’t be able to keep the same team he has this year, for 94 million, and our home-growns are only going to get more expensive. Shields money if very team friendly this year, but your not going to find that next year. Moore is going to have to get very creative and Glass can’t be his normal tight wad self, if the Royal’s want to continue to grow, and to become an annually successful franchise again. If they don’t have a plan in place already, the future looks like more of our beloved Boys in Blue going to bigger markets and more money, while the Royal’s once again start over as a big market farm team.

          • jimfetterolf

            In the future I expect the Royals, unable to pay for home grown stars going FA, trading with 1 1/2 to 2 years left, basically where Billy is now, except that Billy won’t get a big FA contract. Gordon next winter will be most likely to be traded for a bunch of prospects as the team will reload from within. That’s the only way a small market team can survive and sustain.

          • cardsfanatik

            I agree with you, just hope that the trades don’t look anything like when we traded Beltran. :/ That was just giving him away, and if that is the route they take, I have no problem with that, as long as if they don’t find what they want, they don’t just “unload” them for a bag of balls because they feel they need to.

          • jimfetterolf

            Beltran had half a season left and the return was a pitcher, a catcher, and a 3rd baseman as I recall, all major leaguers. It wasn’t a bad trade, the catcher is still in the majors. Beltran was good but he couldn’t play three positions at once. The failure in that was that the two sides were only $1m apart on an extension, it should have happened.

            “Bag of balls” trades arise when unloading players of no value. Gordon next winter should be worth a good haul. Shields right now would return value. Billy, not so much, but a team in a small park could see Billy as a 35-40 homer guy and trade some value for him. The smart kids wanted to trade Jon Sanchez for a bag of balls and instead we got Guthrie :)

          • cardsfanatik

            I still believe that even with this philosophy of trading our home growns before free agency, Glass is still going to have to increase his spending to keep up with the market. I would like to see more contract extensions like Perez signed. It is a risk for both player and team, player possibly leaving money on the table, player maybe sucking, but it only makes some sense. Hosmer should have been locked up last year, although Bore-Ass may have something to do with that. Just something I would like to see more of. I don’t really wanna see Gordo go, but its probably inevitable. I still think the Royal’s got took on the Beltran trade though. None of the players we got were even above average, and Buck is the only one left playing, and he never was that good. I just don’t feel it was a smart trade. Of course now with the draft pick compensation rules, a trade like that you can just laugh at, offer arbitration, and get the draft pick, and get who you want, if it were to get that far. But I agree with you, I would follow the model of the Rays, and trade them with 1 1/2 to 2 years of control, and clean out a farm system for a player.

          • jimfetterolf

            If they don’t sign Santana again, I expect them to make a hard push on Hosmer, Duffy, and Maybe Ventura by the end of ST. Shields’ numbers look out of reach, but the others should be doable. I’ld even think about extending Billy at about 12/x, which is really what he’s worth, about 2 WAR.

          • cardsfanatik

            I don’t see a lot of room for Butler on this team in the future, unless he can consistently do what he did in 2012. His 2013 numbers aren’t worth 12/x, imo. I do like BB as a guy, and if he could play a couple positions on the field I would love to keep him. I’m just afraid that if they extend Hos, and with them wanting to possibly DH Salvy some, it doesn’t leave a ton of room for BB. It made the most sense to me, to trade him before last season. I said it on a few forums and got berated for it. But his haul last offseason would have been very good. Not that I would be totally against a BB extension, I would try to lock up Hos, Duffy, Ventura, and maybe even try to find the money for a 3 or 4 year deal for Shields first. Will be curious to see what Billy’s numbers are like this year. I hope he bounces back and puts up some nice numbers. Moose is my biggest concern as far as the batting order going into this year though. If he sucks again, and they feel they need to give him the whole year to correct it, it could cause some serious issues.

          • jimfetterolf

            I assume they won’t be able or willing to give Shields 6/147. He’s too old for the 6 and likely on the down side of his performance curve, so the 147 is also a stretch.

            As for Billy, the most important thing for him is to have a strong lefty behind him so righties don’t work around him. I think Gordon is best for that, as he can maintain OBP with about anyone following him. Billy hitting behind Hosmer and ahead of Gordon, probably the 3-hole, and I think we see ’12 numbers again and that will put some juice in the line up and get OBP guys at the top as well as three thumpers, then followed by Perez, Moose, Infante, Cain, and Escobar. Infante would work at 2, but his OBP is dependent on average and averages vary.

            Billy at 2.0fW is worth around $12m and an intangible in my mind is that he’s the most likely of the current roster to retire a Royal and that’s psychologically important for young fans, having a player they can grow up with like Brett, a constant in the line up.

            As for Moose, I expect to see Colon get a lot of work at 3rd and Moose to get about a month before the platoon starts and a couple of months before he goes to Omaha if he starts like last year. Royals have the depth to send him to the minors now with Valencia, Bonifacio, and Colon and Gordon for emergencies.

          • cardsfanatik

            I agree on all fronts. I do think Shields is to old for 6 also, but someone will probably give it to him. One of the larger markets that can afford the albatross of the last 2 years.

  • Joel Wagler

    Amen, brother!

  • Chad Woelk

    Great article. If Glass would just allow them to resign Santana or go after Jimenez they would def be in the playoff hunt once again. And you are def right on the Shields extension as well. C’mon Glass open up that wallet please!!!!

  • jimfetterolf

    MLBTR has Shields looking for Greinke money: 6/147. What do we do?

  • moretrouble

    Very nice format for an article, David; a well written piece. My thoughts, in response, are more to elaborate your point, rather than to oppose it. The Glass family, as single owners, must be conservative in their approach to finances because they do not have an ownership group from which to draw support. And, the Royals are a family business for the Glass’s — Ruth and Don occupy seats on the board, Dan is president and David, of course, is the CEO. While it is important for the Glass family to build “brand loyalty” among fans of the team, it is important for fans to remember that decisions made regarding the team reflect the family’s interests — sometimes those coincide with the fans; other times, not so much.