Kansas City Royals Having a Cinematic 2015


I’ve spent the better part of my life in some form of film education.  I’ve earned a Bachelor’s in video production and a Master’s in directing.  It was forgone conclusion to bring my cinematic expertise into watching the Kansas City Royals.  And with a 162-game season, the human narratives develop as three-acts of a movie.

It almost goes without saying, but the 2014 Kansas City Royals and their run through October were a match made in Hollywood.  A hard luck, amoebic offense.  An infectious, youthful energy.  A bullpen for the ages.  Everything seemed straight out of a sports film.

But 2015 was to be the sequel. 

The Royals came into the season with expectations well below that of a typical underdog.  PETCOA and other statistical expert panels projected the Kansas City Royals to return right to their sub -.500 roots of years past.  Baseball has long been a game of numbers, and sabermetrics does have a place in the game, but so much of what the team has accomplished this year just laughs in the face of projections.

The 2015 Royals are a team straight out of a screenplay.

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We got a Cueto

For the first time in thirty years, the Kansas City Royals are on track to own a division.  And that comes with certain perks.  Ever since Zack Greinke decided to abandon Kansas City for greener pastures, the Royals have been without a bonafide ace.  James Shields was a solid rotation leader, but he was never in the elite category.  Johnny Cueto fits that bill, bringing excitement to the fanbase and showing the world that the team wasn’t content with winning a division – they wanted a ticket back to the World Series.

Rise of the Cornermen

Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas never quite lived up to their lofty expectations, until they blasted game-winning long balls in the 2014 Postseason.  But who knew they would develop into All-Star material in a flash?  Defense aside (which might be the best corner combination in the game), their offense has flourished beyond expectations.  Moustakas has gone from one of the worst bats on the roster into manipulating the very defensive shifts that plagued him.  Moved from #2 to lower in the lineup in August, Moustakas has been clutch.

Resurrection and Redemption

Perhaps the most telling aspect of the Dayton Moore regime is his eye for talent – even talents long thought washed up.  Many of the team’s current players are coming off years of injury or abysmal seasons, but Moore somehow knew these guys not only had greatness within, they had greatness that would fuel the Kansas City Royals to another postseason.

Many thought the signing of Kendrys Morales was nothing more than a Billy Butler replacement.  As the hometown favorite set sail for Oakland, Morales was coming to Kansas City needing to shake off a 2014 riddled with inconsistency.  And he shook it off with the force of a hurricane.  Morales has uplifted the DH position from one of consistent disappointment to a true RBI monster.

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Ryan Madson, tortured with years of injuries and looking retirement in the face, joined the Kansas City Royals elite bullpen and made it only better. And Yordano Ventura, proposed “ace” at the introduction of 2015, lumbered through the first half through a series of ejections and disappointments.  But in his last five starts, Ventura has regained whatever confidence he lost and turned up the gas.

And Paulo Orlando.  The career minor leaguer finally made it to the big show, and boy did he dazzle.

We all want the Kansas City Royals to win the World Series.  And with a team loaded with great narratives of drama, comedy, and everything in between, they have an excellent chance.  Whatever happens, it’ll make one hell of a movie.

Next: Kansas City Royals Biggest Surprises in 2015