Invitation to the Dance


With the 2012 Hall of Fame class announcement coming on Monday, it’s been a slow news week in Kansas City. This is yet another disappointing time of the year when all Royals fans can do is look at each other, shrug their shoulders, and talk about how good George Brett was.

With that, I was bouncing around the internet and dug into my hotmail inbox. Sitting in there untouched was an e-mail from the Royals. This had to be it – my long awaited invitation to Spring Training…

OK – it wasn’t that. What it was, was an invitation to the 2012 Royals Awards Luncheon.

How nice of them to think of me. I was honored that they would — oh. Anyone can purchase tickets. That’s fine, it was nice to get the invitation anyway. Since I was unfamiliar with the event, I opened the e-mail to see what this Awards Luncheon thing is all about.

Three paragraphs in the e-mail gave me a date and location for the event so I could block my calendar. The e-mail came on Thursday the 5th, and the event is this coming Wednesday. Six days? Come on Royals, that’s hardly enough warning for a proper save-the-date.

Lunch will be served at noon, which is my all-time favorite time to eat lunch. I was happy with that decision, and then to learn that the awards program would start immediately afterwards. You never want to attend an awards ceremony on an empty stomach.

What comes immediately after the awards program? That could be an opportunity to mingle with the guys, talk about the glory days and how bright the future looks. But it’s also possible that the players disappear out the back door and the house lights are brought to full wattage to usher the disillusioned fans outside. It was impossible to tell from the brief e-mail.

Whoa! Spoiler Alert! Right there in paragraph two, the e-mail told me three of the biggest award recipients. The Pitcher & Player of the year, plus the Joe Burke Special Achievement Award winners were already chosen and announced?? (It’s Bruce Chen, Alex Gordon, and Eric Hosmer by the way…) That’s like announcing the Actor, Actress, and Best Picture Winners before the Oscars.

The third paragraph gives a rundown of some of the big names who will be in attendance. Willie Wilson, Mike Sweeney, George, Dayton Moore, and Ned Yost are all going to be there. Who knows what shenanigans will commence once you get all of those guys in the same room? Especially when it’s being hosted by Ryan Lefebvre.

At the bottom of the e-mail is the gateway to “Buy Tickets”. I was curious to learn more – especially the price of admission…

Upon entering, I find (without another spoiler alert) a complete list of awards and their winners. Reading through them, it’s a pretty impressive list. Each award is named after a legendary Royals player, manager, or member of the front office. I know that if I attend, I’ll get to see Orlando Estevez, the Latin America Scouting Supervisor. He’s the winner of the Art Stewart Scout of the Year Award.

So, how much? I have to click another “Buy Tickets” button. I fear that the suspense is pricing me right out of this luncheon.

Finally, I am at the purchase page and see that it is $150 a head. More than a t-shirt Tuesday, but not terrible. Especially if I get to meet Johnny Giavotella. Plus, if I’m able to find nine friends, I would save a total of $500. That’s a steal.

At the end of the day, it’s another way for the club to make some money, but it’s a chance for fans to see their favorite players – past and present – wearing blazers instead of batting gloves. Depending on how interactive the event is with the actual fans who show up, this could be a really cool event. I’m interested to see how many people show up.

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