Bubba Starling spent seven grueling years in the KC Royals’ minor league system. He finally got the call he had been working for during his entire life.
At times – given all the setbacks – Bubba Starling didn’t think the call would ever come with the KC Royals, but he didn’t quit, he didn’t stop trying and although it took longer than he expected – it arrived – and it didn’t take long for him to make an impact at the highest level.
"From the Associated Press: “It’s very special. I dreamed about it as a little guy coming to the ballgames in Kansas City. I’ve been waiting for this my whole life. Ever since I was a kid coming to the stadium.” – Bubba Starling."
During only his second game at the grand stage, Starling launched an RBI single between third and short that scored Hunter Dozier, and allowed the rookie to breathe freely by shaking off the pressure to deliver his first major league hit.
"From Jeffrey Flanagan, MLB.com: “It’s awesome. It means a lot. I was talking to Duda, and I was like, ‘When did you get your first hit?’ He said he went through a long stretch before he got his. I was like, man, I hope I don’t get to that point. It was awesome to get that first knock out of the way.” – Bubba Starling."
Starling topped that off five days later by delivering his first career home run against the Chicago White Sox. He remained hot as he built an 11-game hitting streak in which he hit for .341 BA, .370 OBP, .455 SLG, and .824 OPS. It was easily the best month of his short major league career.
Unfortunately for Starling, things got worse from there – way worse. His August numbers plummeted to .167 BA, .213 OBP, .262 SLG, and .475 OPS. His September numbers weren’t as bleak, but still not good enough to provide enough consistent production at the starting lineup.
Nonetheless, Starling’s story is that of strong perseverance. He has looked at adversity in the eye throughout his baseball career and hasn’t backed down. There’s no reason to doubt him now.