Chasing The Storm


Frustrated with the current atmosphere here in Kansas City, I decided to take a road trip over the weekend. Everyone has heard about what’s going on in Omaha this season, and I decided that I had to see it for myself.

One thing’s for sure – Tony Abreu didn’t stand out to me at all.

In fact, he made a throwing error during the game that I saw on Saturday night. That’s not to say that he was all bad. He did go 2-4 at the plate, but the error was what mattered. Eventually, two runs scored in that inning.

I was giddy to watch Wil Myers & Johnny Giavotella in person. Of course I’ve seen Gio play, but he’s a hot commodity right now. They should both be in Kansas City. I imagined them keeping their cell phones in their pocket, just waiting for the call from Dayton Moore. However, while I was in attendance, they combined to go 1-8 w/ 3 Ks.

Myers looked like the real deal. He had a swagger to him that made me believe that things were coming easily to him. It’s just a matter of time until he gets his chance on a bigger stage. Giavotella looked a bit frustrated to me. He’s had a rough year in many ways, but I can’t imagine how he feels today. You worry about a guy like him who probably feels like he’s done everything that he’s needed to do to get called up, but continues to get skipped over. I’m not sure what the plan is for him – especially after the events that took place on Sunday.

It was good to see an old favorite, Mitch Maier. I feel for Mitch. After being in the big leagues for so long, he now finds himself in Omaha, hitting 9th, with a batting average right at .200. On this night, he played well and went 2-3. His plan has got to be just to play well enough to get picked up by somebody. It was sad to see him wearing #18 for the Storm Chasers but still swinging #12 bats.

It was a surprise to see another former Royal, Mike Jacobs in the lineup for Reno. He looked smaller than I remember, but had a good game as the DH, going 3-4 w/ 2 RBI.

I thought that Nate Adcock pitched a really good game. He’s another guy that I think needs to be in Kansas City. He’s made so many trips back & forth between KC & Omaha. I don’t feel like he’s really gotten the chance that he’s earned thus far. He got around a leadoff double in the top of the 8th to keep the game 2-1. Giavotella and Myers both came to the plate in the bottom of the 8th and I got excited again. I felt like either or both of them could provide the clutch hits that the Kansas City Royals so desperately need. It wasn’t to be though, as they both struck out swinging. In fact, the 3rd out of that inning was the guy who got promoted, Tony Abreu. Former Royal Roman Colon came in to pitch the 9th inning and showed some Royal flair. Colon quickly gave up a single & a pinch hit home run to Cole Gillespie to stretch the game to 4-2. It was a pretty frustrating and familiar feeling.

The stadium and the atmosphere were amazing. It’s perfect for them. I grew up watching the Omaha Royals play at Rosenblatt, which was cool, but aggrivating at the same time. I was used to seeing Rosenblatt full of ravenous College Baseball fans, but when the Royals played, there seemed to be barely a smattering of people there. They had always clamored for a new, smaller venue and they finally got it. On this night, there were 8,602 fans in attendance at a mostly full Werner Park. It was a cool sight to see.

The loss meant a split of the four game series with Reno after Jake Odorizzi‘s 5-3 loss on Friday night. The Storm Chasers are still miles ahead of any competition in their division, and you get the feeling that they’re coasting a little bit.

I was still hanging around when they lost to Colorado Springs 10-3 on Sunday. That made for three straight losses.

I guess my takeaway from this trip was that Omaha does not hold all of the answers. In fact, they looked a lot like the Royals I watch on TV every night. Still, for anyone in Kansas City that is looking to make the road trip, I’d highly advise it. There’s something really fun about Minor League Baseball. You should see it for yourself. You have guys on their way up and guys on their way down. You’ve also got guys who are stuck. There’s plenty of drama and storylines to follow. Plus, the players in Omaha are very familiar. If I squinted just right, I saw a combination of players on the field who represented the recent past and not-so-distant future of the Kansas City Royals.