Friday, September 11, 2009

I'm Done.

So the Royals have improbably swept the Tigers, as the trio of Bruce Chen, Robinson Tejeda, and Lenny DiNardo led the Royals to victory over Rick Porcello, Justin Verlander, and Jarrod Washburn. After eking out a win tonight in Cleveland, the Royals have won five games in a row for the first time since they were, yes, 18-11. Seems like a good time for some positivity.

If that’s what you’re thinking, I’m afraid I have to disappoint you.

I’ve let this column stew in my head for a few days now, in the hope that time would dull the sharp edges a little bit. As harsh as this column might read, trust me, if I had written it two days ago it would have been much, much worse.

On Tuesday the Royals announced their final September callups of the year. Two days after the Royals rushed reinforcements to Kansas City in the arms of Dusty Hughes, Victor Marte, and Carlos Rosa (and the glove – certainly not the bat – of Luis Hernandez), the team brought back Alex Gordon after he had served penance for his sins at the plate, and brought up Lenny DiNardo in order to fill out a rotation that is suddenly down Gil Meche and Brian Bannister.

But it was the player the Royals didn’t call up that has exposed this organization once again as having blinders on to any kind of objective analysis of what the issues are with this team. Much as the acquisition of Yuniesky Betancourt spoke volumes about how clueless the Royals are when it comes to a rational evaluation of a player’s worth, the decision not to promote this player from Triple-A is damning evidence of the same thing.

And no, I’m not talking about Chris Hayes. I think Disco was deserving of a September callup, and could have helped the team down the stretch, but he stumbled down the stretch, allowing a 6.39 ERA after the All-Star Break thanks mostly to ridiculously bad luck in the BABIP category, as Hayes himself documented here. In 25 innings since the Break, Hayes walked just five batters and allowed just one homer, but gave up 42 hits on a BABIP of .410. For a pitcher who is never going to be taken seriously until he starts retiring major league hitters – and maybe not even then – Hayes’ stumble gave the Royals the excuse they were looking for to keep him down on the farm.

I’m obviously disappointed that Hayes won’t get the chance to see the Show this year, but I still think he had a good year overall, and is closer to the majors now than he was in March. For the season, he had a 3.05 ERA, and despite allowing 100 hits in 86 innings, he surrendered just 13 walks and three home runs. That’s positively Quisenberry-esque, as are the 41 strikeouts. (I mean that literally. In 1986, Quiz threw 81 innings, allowed 92 hits, 12 unintentional walks, 2 homers, and had 36 Ks. He had a 2.77 ERA. Not identical, but damn close.) I think Hayes has put himself in a position where, at worst, he’ll start next season in Triple-A, and if his luck evens out he’s in position to put pressure on the Royals to call him up all season long.

(Hayes isn’t exactly hurting in the publicity department either. After he was the subject of Joe Posnanski’s last official column for the Star, he’s been the subject of tweets by Ken Tremendous and Saturday Night Live’s Seth Meyers. I dare say that he’s now the most famous minor league middle reliever with a 78-mph fastball in the country.)

I’m not concerned about Hayes’ long-term future, but I am concerned about his future with the Royals. Hayes becomes Rule 5-eligible this winter if he’s not put on the team’s 40-man roster, and let’s be honest: does anyone here think the Royals believe he’s worthy of a roster spot? So I’ll call it now: the Royals will leave Disco off their 40-man roster, and there’s about a 50/50 chance that another team will take a $50,000 flyer on the kid who throws 78 but still gets people out. The odds would be a lot higher if the A’s didn’t already have Brad Ziegler, or if the Red Sox didn’t have so many resources that they don’t need to take a gamble on the soft-tossing submarine guy.

I’m not referring to Cory Aldridge either, although Aldridge certainly has the right to be upset about not getting called up. Aldridge isn’t a prospect – he turns 30 later this year – but he was Omaha’s Player of the Year after hitting .316/.361/.582 with 22 homers in 98 games. Calling Aldridge up to the majors wouldn’t hurt the team – any outfield that’s playing both Mitch Maier and Josh Anderson regularly needs all the help it can get – and would have been a nice way to honor a career minor leaguer who had the best season of his 13-year pro career. A small-market team like the Royals needs to be aggressive about recruiting minor league free agents, and it’s going to be that much harder to entice them to sign with Kansas City when a guy like Aldridge, who did everything he possibly could to earn a promotion, gets shut out of a month in the major leagues. Not to mention the $50,000 or so he would have made this month, which likely would have doubled his income for the year.

But no, I’m not that upset about those two decisions. It’s the decision to leave Kila Ka’aihue in Omaha that opens a window into the soul of the Royals’ front office. And what we’re seeing is not pretty.

I’ll be the first to admit that Ka’aihue has had a disappointing season. After hitting .314 last season, he hit just .252 this year. His home runs plummeted from 37 to 17, his slugging average dropped nearly 200 points from .628 to .433. But the one part of Ka’aihue’s game that didn’t deteriorate this season was his plate discipline. He drew 104 walks last season, and 102 more this year. Despite his low batting average, Ka’aihue had a .392 OBP.

I’ve said this before, but let me say it again: the single biggest failing of the Royals as a franchise over the last quarter-century hasn’t been their pitching, or their bullpen, or their lack of power or speed or defense. It has been a lack of ability or effort to get on base; specifically, an inability to take a walk. The Royals have ranked in the bottom half of the AL in walks drawn for TWENTY CONSECUTIVE SEASONS, and 28 of the last 29 years. After finishing dead last in walks last season, with one of the lowest walk totals by any team since World War II, they’ve improved all the way to next-to-last this season.

Dayton Moore and Trey Hillman have both paid lip service to the importance of plate discipline and OBP since the day they were hired…and then sabotaged that mission with seemingly every move. After tossing us a bone by hiring Kevin Seitzer as the team’s hitting coach last winter, Moore proceeded to crank up the degree of difficulty on Seitzer’s job, trading for Mike Jacobs (career OBP: .318), and Miguel Olivo (career high in walks: 20) over the winter, and then making Betancourt (career high in walks: 17) the cherry on top this summer.

Meanwhile, down in Triple-A, the Royals have a player who has now drawn over 100 walks in back-to-back seasons. (And remember, minor league seasons run only 140 games.) This player is a left-handed hitting 1B/DH, coincidentally the same role that Jacobs plays on the team. Jacobs has had the season that some of us expected him to, hitting just .235/.301/.417 with no speed or defensive value. As disappointing as Ka’aihue’s season was in Triple-A, it was essentially the equivalent of Jacobs’ season. According to Baseball Prospectus’ Davenport Translations, if you project what Ka’aihue’s numbers would have been had he played against major league competition this year, he would have hit .237 with a .408 slugging average – virtually identical to Jacobs’ performance this year.

Oh, except that thanks to all those walks, Ka’aihue’s OBP would be .368 – more than 60 points higher than Jacobs’.

I won’t mention that if the Royals had picked Ka’aihue over Jacobs last winter, they would still have Leo Nunez, whose 4.11 ERA this season would look awfully good compared to the scrubs that have been coughing up runs in middle relief all season. And I won’t mention that they also would have saved about 3 million dollars. That’s water under the bridge at this point. But just looking to 2010, it’s piercingly clear that Ka’aihue is a better hitter than Jacobs. He can’t possibly be worse defensively; he’s a lot cheaper; and he’s younger (and thus is more likely to improve on his 2009 season, particularly given how he hit in 2008). And did I mention he’s better?

Sure, it’s possible that Ka’aihue could be that mythical AAAA-player, the guy who lights up Triple-A pitching but can’t hit his way out of a paper bag in double-decker stadiums. That’s what September is for: to take advantage of the fact that you’re miles away from a pennant race by giving your young players some at-bats to evaluate them against major league competition.

Or, you know, you could send just send them home and continue to play veterans who have already proven they can’t hit.

Much like the acquisition of Betancourt, the direct damage of keeping Ka’aihue down on the farm pales to the indirect damage of what this decision says about the front office. The trade for Betancourt hurt the team, but it wasn’t a fatal blow – Jose Guillen makes as much in four months as the Royals will pay Betancourt over the life of his contract. But it was the thought process that led to the Betancourt trade that was so damning. Same thing here – while keeping Ka’aihue in the minors denies the team a chance to upgrade their offense and simultaneously cut payroll, what hurts more than Ka’aihue’s absence is that we have a front office that so little values his talents.

I have tried to come up with a plausible explanation for why Ka’aihue was left in the minors. The 40-man roster is full? Not only is that easily remedied – the Royals could easily open up space by putting Jose Guillen or John Bale or Julio Pimentel on the 60-day DL, or they could cut non-prospects like Devon Lowery and Mario Lisson – it’s irrelevant, since Ka’aihue is already on the 40-man roster. Financial considerations? Maybe in the Allard Baird era I would believe this, but I refuse to believe that Moore left Ka’aihue behind in order to save $50,000 – which is about what Gil Meche makes in one day. They don’t want to rush him? Ka’aihue has played 164 games in Triple-A, and 264 more in Double-A – the equivalent of over three full seasons in the high minors.

I have learned, from years of painful experience, to never assume that the Royals will allow common sense to creep into their decision-making process. This is the same organization, after all, that kept Jose Lima in their starting rotation for a full season – earning him incentives of over $1 million – while Lima was fashioning one of the worst seasons by a starting pitcher in major league history.

But I still didn’t see this coming. I still could not have fathomed that the Royals would rather continue to play out the string with a failed acquisition than so much as look at their best hitter in the high minors over the last two years. Even if you think Ka’aihue isn’t a legitimate prospect, even if (as I have heard) the Royals think Ka’aihue has slider bat-speed and won’t catch up to major league heat, what’s the harm in letting him prove it? Maybe Ka’aihue isn’t the answer to your DH hole – but since Jacobs has already proven that he’s not the answer, why not give Ka’aihue the chance to sink or swim?

Because…because…the Royals don’t think that Jacobs has proven to be a failure. And that’s the most frightening fact of all. Against all odds, against all the evidence, all the signs (the decision to leave Ka’aihue in the minors is just the latest one) point to the fact that the Royals want to bring Jacobs back. While the rest of us have watched a one-trick pony who can’t hit for average, can’t work a walk, can’t run, and can’t play defense to save his life, the Royals still see a solution. It’s as if, having acquired Jacobs last winter, the front office has decided that Jacobs is a fine player – they traded for him, after all! – and any evidence to the contrary is simply inaccurate. If the numbers say that Jacobs is actually a pretty useless player, well then, reality must have an anti-Royals bias.

Moore should run for political office one day, because he has already mastered the most important skill of any politician: when confronted with bad news, deny, deny, deny. Moore is still looking for the WMDs in Iraq. He did not have sexual relations with that woman*.

*: If it’s not a rule, it should be: if you insult both political parties back-to-back, no one can claim that you were being political. Fair?

The Royals traded for Jacobs, and while the rest of us see his .235 average and .301 OBP, the Royals see a guy who has given the team the power threat they really needed. And besides, he’s hitting .294 since August 2nd! Never mind that from May 20th to August 1st, Jacobs – who’s a DH, remember – hit .171/.247/.304. Deny, deny, deny.

(The combined totals for the Royals’ cleanup slot this year – which has been mostly manned by Jacobs and Guillen – are .211/.278/.301. More amazing than that: when Jacobs went deep on September 2nd, it was the first time the Royals’ cleanup hitter had hit a home run since JUNE 10TH.)

The rest of us see that Roman Colon never did anything in Triple-A to justify a callup in the first place, and that he’s got a 5.31 ERA this year. The Royals see an excellent middle reliever. In fact, Colon has had four scoreless appearances in a row - he’s proven he’s ready for a more important role! Deny, deny, deny.

The rest of us scratched our heads when the Royals gave $9 million to sign a pitcher whose ERAs the previous three years read 4.48, 4.80, and 4.36. The Royals denied that was a problem – Kyle Farnsworth throws 100! We need strikeout pitchers in the bullpen!

Trust us: Sidney Ponson gives the team the veteran presence in the rotation that we’re missing. You can't win without a left-handed starter in your rotation, and never mind if Horacio Ramirez hasn't been a decent starter since 2005.

What’s that? How dare you suggest that the team might have mishandled Coco Crisp’s shoulder issues! (Just this morning I was told that another ex-Royal had privately bashed the team’s training staff as one of the worst in the industry.)

And you, Keith Law: how dare you write an unflattering column about my contract extension! (Here’s what Law wrote in his chat session yesterday: “Someone I know well with KC told me after I wrote that the Royals shouldn't give Dayton an extension that we're not friends any more. The entire organization has gone mad - you are simply not allowed to criticize them.” And while Law didn’t mention it in his chat, I’ve also learned that after publishing his criticism of Dayton Moore’s extension, Law received a phone call…from Dayton Moore.

Yuniesky Betancourt has been a tremendous pickup for us, and we’re thrilled to have him under contract for the next two or three years. Never mind that he’s hitting .222/.263/.361, or that his defensive numbers say that he’s cost the team 8 runs compared to an average defensive shortstop in just 50 games since he joined the team. I really don’t know how some of those statistics are evaluated. Which means they must not mean anything.

(Anyone remember how, in the midst of the firestorm of criticism that accompanied the Betancourt trade, Moore defended the move in part by pointing out how so many people in the media panned the signing of Willie Bloomquist signing? Yeah, he actually used Willie Bloomquist to defend himself. Bloomquist is hitting .257/.300/.345 this year, and the majority of his playing time has come in the outfield. That’s right: an outfielder with a .300 OBP and no power is a feather in Moore’s cap. But hey, at least Bloomquist was totally right about Betancourt! “He could be the best defensive shortstop in the game hands down. And offensively, he can swing it…It makes me smile that we got him. He’s going to help.”)

There’s no way we could have made this trade without including Daniel Cortes. Just because people in the Mariners’ own front office have said they would have done the trade for Derrick Saito alone doesn’t mean anything. Don’t believe everything you’re told by someone who works in a team’s front office. Well, unless it’s our front office.

Besides, it’s not like Cortes is a great prospect. I mean, sure, he was our #1 pitching prospect just six months ago, and he’s only 22 years old, and we sold at the absolute nadir of his trade value. But trust us – Cortes is nothing special. (Ben Badler of Baseball America wrote this in a chat session today: “late in the season [Cortes] was sitting in the low-90s with a plus curve and much better command than he had shown earlier in the year, and the numbers from his last three starts bear that out.” In his last three starts, Cortes whiffed 24 batters in 17 innings.)

Gil Meche’s back is fine. Okay, it’s not fine, but he can pitch through it. There’s nothing wrong with letting him throw 132 pitches in order to finish off a 5-0 game. It’s just a coincidence that he gave up 9 runs in his next start. And it’s another coincidence that he complained of a tired arm two starts after that. And just because he was complaining of a tired arm two days ago, there’s nothing wrong with letting him throw 121 pitches in his next start, working against the heart of the Twins’ lineup in the sixth inning. The fact that he has an 8.01 ERA since that start, and that he’s now out for the season with a tired shoulder? Pure coincidence. We’ve done nothing wrong.

(The best part of the link above is that Posnanski finishes with this line: 'Were [Hillman and Nick Swartz] thinking, “Boy, I hope this works and doctors don’t find out tomorrow that Gil has a serious injury because that would mean both our butts?”' They didn't find out tomorrow - it took two months - but now that Meche's arm has come up lame, I'm sure that Hillman and Swartz are worried about their job security. Oh, who am I kidding?)

Call up some new relievers? Why would we want to do that? Just because we blew 8th-inning leads in three straight games coming out of the All-Star Break? Just because the bullpen – even including Joakim Soria – has an ERA over six since the Break? Our bullpen is fine. Besides, there isn’t anyone down in Omaha that can help. It doesn’t prove anything that Dusty Hughes, Victor Marte, and Carlos Rosa have thrown 7.2 scoreless innings since they were called up.

And most important of all: never mind the fact that the Royals are 37-74 in their last 111 games. Everyone knows that only the first 29 games of the season matter, and we won 18 of them! Besides, what really ruined the season was injuries, and never mind that many of them were self-inflicted. All that matters is that the team was 18-11 before Alex Gordon got hurt…okay, Gordon actually got hurt a week into the season and had only two hits before he went on the DL…before Mike Aviles got hurt…okay, Aviles hit .183/.208/.250 before he went on the DL…before Coco Crisp got hurt! Yeah, that’s it! If Crisp had just stayed healthy, we would have continued to play .621 ball all season!

Deny, deny, deny.

And then, when someone has the temerity to ask why, if the front office hasn’t made any mistakes this year, the team has the worst record in the American League – by all means, blame your first baseman (who’s the best hitter on your team, and the best young hitter your organization has developed in at least 15 years) for not turning 3-6-3 double plays. No, really, say that.

The Royals under Dayton Moore have been engaging in magical thinking all year long: if they believe something strongly enough, it will come true. Mike Jacobs is a good hitter. Mike Jacobs is a good hitter. Mike Jacobs is a good hitter. If we call up Kila Ka’aihue and give him a chance to play, that would mean Mike Jacobs is not a good hitter. Mike Jacobs is a good hitter. Does not compute.

Maybe if the Royals weren’t so focused on uncovering and stamping out criticism of the organization, they might have uncovered the fact that Luke Hochevar has been tipping his pitches for the last two years. Hochevar just learned that at least half a dozen major league teams have been sitting on his every pitch – and I can tell you that the people who finally let him in on the secret last week weren’t part of the Royals’ organization.

But again: the Royals are far more concerned with keeping information from leaking out of the organization then with bringing new information into the organization. They have all the answers. If only I had known they had all the answers two years ago, I wouldn’t have started this blog in the first place.

But now I know. So now’s the time for me to put this blog on hiatus.

I think it’s pretty clear that I need a break from the Royals. The fact that they’re on a modest little winning streak right now (though, predictably, they’ve done everything they could to screw Greinke out of wins in his last two starts) and all I can think about are all the things they’re doing wrong, suggests that I need to get away for a while. Anger has turned into bitterness, and it’s not healthy for me to write while I’m bitter. I’m sure many of you will be very critical of this column, and that’s your prerogative. The Royals have just won five in a row, and I spend over 4000 words ripping the team for not bringing up a minor leaguer for a few weeks? But that’s just it: I’ve reached the point where seemingly minor decisions are sending me off the deep end. So it’s probably best for everyone – you, me, and the Royals – if I stop writing for a while.

Over the last few days I talked to some close contacts who follow the team, hoping that they might reassure me that things aren’t as bad as they seem, and that they might talk me out of writing this column. The opposite occurred; they agreed that the organization is even more dysfunctional than it appears on the surface.

I started this blog two seasons ago with two main goals in mind: to influence the discourse about the Royals in the hopes that I might influence the team’s decisions in some small fashion, and to have fun. With regards to the first goal, I’ve obviously been a complete failure: judging from their moves, you’d think the Royals were doing the exact opposite of what I’ve preached purely out of spite. (I mean, seriously, I was the only stats guy in the universe that advocated the Royals should trade for Jeff Francoeur, who might be Dayton Moore’s favorite player in the world. They didn’t, and Francoeur was dumped on the Mets. Oh, and since being traded he’s hitting .296/.327/.481. That would look nice in our outfield.)

But up until recently I was having fun. I’ve had a blast establishing a rapport with all of you, building the kind of community that brought things like “The Mexicutioner” to a national audience. That sense of camaraderie has made all the losses tolerable, because at least we were all losing together.

The last three months have been, well, not fun. It’s not the losing; it’s the sense that the Royals’ front office operates in a different reality than the rest of us. Joe Posnanski wrote back in July that “one of the more frustrating things about being a fan is when you root for a team that so clearly has a different philosophy about sports than you have about sports.” As a Royals fan, I don’t know anything else. For 20 years – since the first time I cracked open a Bill James’ Baseball Abstract – my philosophy about baseball has been to use the power of sabermetrics to your advantage. And for 20 years, the Royals have been farther behind the curve when it comes to objective analysis than any team in baseball.

It’s one thing to have a philosophical disagreement with your team. It’s quite another when your team digs in its heels and refuses to change its philosophy…for 20 years...despite one of the losingest stretches in the history of the game. The Pittsburgh Pirates just got a lot of attention for setting a major league record with their 17th consecutive losing season. Over the last 17 years, the Royals have more losses than the Pirates.

And still, the Royals live in this alternate reality, where night is day, up is down, Yuniesky Betancourt is a good ballplayer and Kila Ka’aihue can’t hold Mike Jacobs’ jock. Where losing is part of The Process. Where there is no such thing as legitimate criticism.

It’s not fun anymore. You know things are bad when the Royals win five in a row, and the two things running through my head are, "great, there goes our draft position" and "yeah, because that 18-8 record last September was such a strong omen." So I’m going to take a few months to recharge and see if the fun returns. I’ll still watch the Royals whenever Greinke starts, I’ll still root for Bam Bam to hit more doubles and for Alex Gordon to revive his career. I’ll still try to fit essay-length commentary into 140 characters on Twitter (@jazayerli). But between now and spring training, don’t expect any posts to show up here. If the Royals make some significant moves over the winter – they sign a free agent, they make a trade, they fire Trey Hillman (a man can dream) – I might show up here with some brief commentary. Other than that, I’m done for 2009.

If, over the winter, Dayton Moore decides to rejoin this plane of existence and acknowledge that The Process – the process that put together the 2009 Royals – is fatally flawed, then I look forward to being back next spring. If the upcoming off-season is a rehash of last off-season, well, I can find other things to occupy my evenings in the spring and summer.

Thanks to everyone for reading, and if the Royals cooperate this winter I hope to meet you all back here next February. Letting Mike Jacobs go over the off-season would be a nice start.


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Clint said...

This might be the best blog post ever written. I couldn't agree more with you. Every single second of every single day it becomes harder and harder to be a fan of the KC Royals. And I thought I was a die-hard fan. Dayton Moore and David Glass and Trey Hillman have made it their personal goal to kill off the entire Royals' fan base. It irks me. There is nothing anyone can do.

How do I switch teams?

I can't.

How do I enact change to the team I love.

I can't.

It's hopeless.

It's over.

Thanks for all of your thoughts over the past two years Rany. You have been a net plus to the sports blogosphere.


Anonymous said...

Rany to Royals: I'll see myself out.

ajblobaum said...

I'm going to take a silver lining to this:

- One less thing for me to read, which means I can occupy my time doing other theoretically more productive things. Like tweeting.

Nathan said...

Rany, you should add the caveat that if Greinke, by some miracle, overcomes the rest of the team and wins a cy young, you'll come back to write one more time. You could say, if you want, that it isn't a post about the Royals, but rather a post about Zack Greinke.

genuinebeat said...


I appreciate your frustration cause I am right there with you. But the constant negativity just becomes too much. I think it has become to much for some of your readers (like me) and obviously it has become too much for you.

Marmot said...

Sorry, couldn't slog through all of this--a little too self-indulgent and long winded. But I take it you're not writing about the Royals any more...or at least not until you do write about the Royals again.

Fair enough. I never thought your Royals hobby was good for're the doctor, but being a Royals fan doesn't seem good for your long term health. You need a less frustrating hobby, golf maybe.

FAst Eddie said...

Go Cardinals!

Anonymous said...

I made a promise to a good friend of mine that if Greinke doesn't win the CY Young this year, I'm done too after 23 years. Soren Petro made a great comparison how much success the Cardinals had and how much failure the Royals had since 1985 even though the market size is the same. The Blue Titanic is not changing course. No matter how badly it hurts, I'm making the break regardless of the CY Young results. I'll always follow Greinke and Butler but the Royals no longer. It's pointless until the entire philosophy in the organization changes. It's like going to a church that still worships golden cows.

Anonymous said...

Rany, you make good points but it is obvious that a vacation from the Royals is in order for you.

Say what you will, but I do believe The Process is working, when you consider that the majority of our minor league teams below AAA level are participating in post-season play. These are the teams that Moore and his group have focused on. This is encouraging for the future, although no help today.

I will continue to pay for the suite my company leases as well as personal season tickets because I see positives in the future. I am no happier with this season than any other fan, but at least see light at the end of the tunnel, which we never saw with the prior management.

Anonymous said...

Bullshit. You'll be back.
If not,then enjoy rooting for a team that wins games.
I'd rather be a Royals fan than dirty bandwagoner.

Casper said...

This is what I'll miss most about your blog, Rany - you have as many fucktarded idiots that come in here and post stupid and negative stuff about you for posting negative stuff as much as anything else. Dude, I don't know how you've lasted as long as you have. I've been reading your site since it was launched and I also refuse to focus on the silver-lining any more, because after 20 years of bullshit ineptitude from the team you love you get tired of looking at the silver-lining and want a little fucking sunlight for a change. You get tired of staring up the ass cracks of the other teams on top of you in the standings year after year after year after year after year after...

Anyone in here that says we're abandoning the team or something either A)Haven't been fans as long as we have so can't know the pain like we do, B) Haven't been as BIG of fans as we have and therefore can't know the pain like we do, or C)Aren't really fans to begin with and are just incendiary douches who find it easier to criticize those that criticize (aka, hypocrites) the team than to learn about something (the team, the organization, the game of baseball) and then form their own opinions and then defend those opinions (I personally know a couple like that).

Hope you come back, but if not, live long and prosper. In the mean time, I'll just have to focus on the silver-lining (again) - at least I won't have to read what the inbred retards are posting in here anymore (aka, the chicken shits that always post as Anonymous and then blast you for doing what they're doing: criticizing).

Ryan said...

Amen, Rany.

K.C. said...

I've enjoyed reading your blog over the season, but I definitely agree you need a break, and am glad you've remained objective enough to see that. Your anger and bitterness are sucking any enjoyment out of reading what otherwise would be good insights into the train wreck this season has become. I shut the TV off last night in disgust after Greinke was assured a no decision, and even I think your newest column reads like one big pity party.

You obviously love baseball, and you obviously are so bent out of shape that you can't even enjoy it any more. And that's incredibly sad. Hopefully you can find a way to balance your feelings so that you can follow your favorite team without staying a black hole of negativity. Especially since if you only start writing again when the Royals are actually good, no one is going to take you seriously anymore.

Take care, Rany.

Andy said...

I've given up on this season as well, it's just gotten to hard to watch.

Hoever, I agree with Nathan. It would be nice to see one final Greinke article when the season is over.

Unknown said...


I agree this team is horrible and I have been watching/listening to every game for years I read about them on the star website poz's site your site and daily and I can't take it anymore this team is going nowhere well maybe backwards. I've been encouraged by butler and soria and greinke of course but we need guys who get on base and can catch and throw the ball where its going. This DDJ for GG is hilarious he's avg at best. I will miss your column and insight you are great to read and very knowledgable and wish they would listen to half of what you say. But they won't they are too stubborn. I have season tickets and haven't been since early june and am not going back or renewing my 4 tickets next year. I'm done also. Lifes to short to watch this shitty team I will be on the golf course enjoying my summer next year not wasting my time watching this shit.

Anonymous said...


You are at a point that I was with the Chiefs and Carl Peterson...even with a new GM it has been hard for me to buy in to them, so I get where you're coming from.

I am not ready to give up on DM yet, however. I do think that this offseason is going to be key to determining his and the Royals' future. I am willing to give him the chance to atone for his mistakes.

Not calling up Kila is not a great sign but if they non-tender Jacobs and put Kila in there instead for 2010, then we're going in the right direction.

I'm going to give DM this offseason to right the ship.

Elder Eddie said...

Wow, it is just a sports team. I hope you find your positive life back. Must be tiring bashing people all the time. Your negativity has become too much. While I agree the Royals are not a good team right now, they are still my team and I hope they get better. Again, hope you find your positive side back. God bless.

Will said...


I'm glad you're taking a break. I love that you bleed Royal Blue and hope that you always do, but I think you seriously need to take a step back and find some balance. I stopped regularly reading your blog about halfway through the season because of your increasing bitterness. I hope you find your way back and I look forward to reading posts from the old Rany again sometime in the future.

Anonymous said...

enjoy your time off. but ill be expecting a greinke story. (and maybe one on tpj the pitcher)

Jeff said...

Finally you agree with me. The Royals should just be put down like Old Yeller.

Please God make it stop.

Sign the Petition here:

Anonymous said...

Best wishes Rany and thanks for all of the passion and insight. Anyone who loves and follows the Royals and has the mental capacity to review the Royals decisions in the prism of objective, quantifiable analysis can hardly blame you for the position you articulate in your blog. It is really so bizarre the Emperor's Clothes scenario that has enveloped the Royals, particularly being a small market organization that is uniquely blessed to have in their backyard leading columnists and/or fans such as yourself, Poz, Bill James, Neyer, etc. yet there may be no organization in the past 20+ years that has more roundly rejected the evolution and application of baseball analysis that has frequently been best articulated by voices that live and breathe in their own backyard - so much so that even their play by play guy roundly criticizes sabermetrics. If we'd been a winning franchise for any stretch during the past 20+ years, this position might make some sense, but instead we are in the middle of a stretch of historic futility. Enjoy your break. There are fellow masochistic Royals fans out there who can empathize.

Rojas said...

I hope none of you guys decide to come back in a few years when things are turned around. Enjoy rooting for the RedYankeeDodgerSox.

Brian B. said...

The Royals have been my favorite team for a long time (though I wasn't rooting for'em yet in 1985), but I've been reading U.S.S. Mariner and Where Have You Gone, Andy Van Slyke? this year, and trying vaguely to follow Pirates and Mariners games. So far the emotion hasn't transferred, but maybe it'll do so.

I could never root for the Yankees, Red Sox, Dodgers, Mets etc. But it would be nice to root for a bad time under new management that knows what the heck it's doing. Rany, you already know that the people who accuse you of being bandwagonesque are asshats. But I don't think it's so terrible to see if one can learn to care about underdogs who aren't idiots, or (more importantly) underdogs who aren't cruel and destructive to their own players -- as the Royals, increasingly, seem to be.

Kansas City said...

It is time for our internet friend Rany to take a break. He has terrific insight into statistics and baseball, but if it can only be delivered in anger and hostility and extreme length, then it is time to cool off.

I don't see how Moore could possibly bring back Jacobs, so Rany will have one happy day this winter.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Rany. I enjoyed reading your columns more than watching the games the past few seasons. I wish it was the other way...

JWalker said...

If you want a positive blog, maybe you should just switch to Rany on the Blue Rocks, Bees, and Naturals.

I'm just hoping that by the time these players are in the big leagues, DM and Trey won't be running this team.

Dave said...

This blog says a ton. You actually started this blog hoping you could somehow influence the decisions the Royals were making?



No wonder half the stuff you write is, to semi-quote another commenter, long-wided self-indulgent tripe. Good riddance, pal.

Anonymous said...

First, one brief objection--Mitch Maier has had a pretty good second half of the season--perhaps good enough that it will save us having to watch Coco Crisp playing CF next summer. It's the inclusion of Josh Anderson in the OF that makes it R rated.

As for the overall focus of the article, I hope you'll reconsider. I hope you'll take some time to recharge, but I hope you keep writing. Yes, this year has been horrible. Yes, the Royals, in about four months, have gone from looking like the next version of the Twins to looking like the same team they've been for the last twenty years. Yes, the Royals tried to jerk your credentials. I just think you're missing the biggest point here---you can still be a Royals fan without being a Dayton Hillass fan. Instead of using this space to bitch about all things you have no control over, use it to educate some of us about ways the Royals could fix the problem. Profile some players the Royals should look at. Point out some guys who are stuck in other organizations that could be had in trades. Take aim at the the Royals system for minor league instruction that seems unable develop hitters.

Finally, remember, as bad as this team is, we still have reason for hope. We have the best starting pitcher in baseball. We have a closer who is young, under contract, and, when used by a non-asshat manager, very effective. We have one of the best young hitters in baseball. Our minor league system, at least at the low level, is finally performing well (three teams in the playoffs). Maybe Dayton will suprise us and we won't have to watch Mike Jacobs pop up or Mark Teahen strike out of Miguel Buck block balls in the dirt like a 85 year old retiree.

Kansas City said...

Olivo did make a nice save a a high inside fastball last night to save the game when Wright was pitching with a man on third -- plus two tags at home and the game winning home run. I think an argument could be made that he should be brought back based on slug, although the team would have to markedly improve OBP in other places.

I read Moore on line at the Royals site. Not very encouraging. He still is pitching Betancourt's defensive abilities and blaming injuiries.

The craziest part of Moore is how he has signed or traded for so many players that teams REALLY did not want, e.g. Betancourt, Jacobs, Farnsworth, Guillen, and probably Crisp.




Nathan said...

I always agree with anyone who types in all capital letters. I find it soothing.

Anonymous said...

please dont come back..
that goes for all you guys quitting on the team.. i hope im not sharing high fives with any of you in the playoffs in a couple years.

Rany said...

Who said I'm no longer a fan of the team? I thought I made it quite clear that even though I don't have any faith in them, I'm still rooting for the Royals. I just don't feel like blogging about them anymore. I wasn't aware that maintaining an active blog about the Royals was a prerequisite to being a fan.

I knew this would happen, but it's still kind of surreal that I'm being called a fair-weather fan by some people.

Anonymous said...

Well, if you still miss hearing from him you can always follow his blog at


Jeff said...

Rany, you're being called a fair-weather fan by people who can't locate the CAPS LOCK button. Stupidity never shocks me; it only surprises me when it seems to have merited an extension through 2014.

Thank you for giving us this blog for the past two years, and I look forward to reading it again when we have a competent front office.

Jeff said...

Also, I wish there were a way to track cowardly anonymous comments. People who say things like that in public fora should have their professional lives ruined permanently.

Anonymous said...

rock on, rany.

Antonio said...

I'll miss your blog, Rany, but I understand your frustration. I hope after awhile you find that you're ready to write here again.

Anonymous said...

The column was interesting, but probably a year (or at least nine months) too late. Judging from some of the responses, though, it would not have mattered as there are plenty of fans who have had so much of Dayton's Kool-Aid that he can probably get away with another season or so of running this franchise into the ground.

Kila was called up last season after blowing through the system and having an exceptional year and all he got to do was sit on the bench and watch other guys (like the Ryan Shealys of the world who did enough to keep playing and hold out hope that acquiring them was not part of the problem) play. The Royals at that point were making it clear they did not believe in Kila and to have then given him almost no shot this spring as well (he got all of 17 AB in 14 games; oh yeah, his OBP was .409), it is not all that hard to imagine why he played this season like his soul was crushed.

For those who look at the Royals' lower minor league teams and their playoff appearances as hope for the future- look again. Those teams are not winning with a preponderance of prospects. Instead, they are winning with a bunch of career minor leaguers too old for their levels with a few decent prospects thrown in. Anyone who truly believes the Royals are on the right track is simply giving Moore and company more and more rope and by the time they hang themselves, it will be a long, long way to respectability for the franchise.

If I had put as much of my heart and soul into rooting for the Royals as Rany and some of the rest of you have, I'd be bitter too. I'd prefer that, rather than take a long break, you find something- anything- positive in all of this. There is always Greinke and Butler and... never mind.

Curt said...

You are not a 'fair weather fan' as some dopes had commented. You have had it and I don't blame you.
When your kids grow up you will experience the same thing. You provide them with all the expert advice and guidance only to see it totally ignored. With your kids you can't check out, with this sad sack bunch you have no choice. I have been a fan since the day I moved here at age 14, in 1974. 35 years later I still get up in the middle of the night to check the box score or get the paper, but in the last two months I don't even know who they are playing.
My own boys are 22 and 20 and have never experienced the joy of following their hometown team in a pennant race. I have asked them to go out to the yard numerous times this season, but they have no interest. Does anybody really think we will be in contention in the next few years. I am sure even GMDM and Trey don't think so.
If the Red Sox have taken a chance on Bill James don't you think the low budget Royals could at least pay attention to you and/or your sabermetrics? Wal-Mart uses very detailed statistical anaylsis from everything to inventory to product placement. Could the royals at lest consider the possibilities that the statistics do provide some insight into a players worth or value? I don't blame David Glass as much as I do GMDM. Everyone loved the hire. I do agree the extention timing was curious, maybe a couple of years so he didn't go out and make a bunch of desperate moves.....
Anyway, you absoultely have the right to step away, you do so much research to support your posts, it has to be frustrating to have all the obvious information you lay out like on Mike Jacobs be so routinely poo-poo'ed by such 'smart' baseball men.
Thanks for all your work over they years. I have looked forward to your posts so from a selfish perspective I wish you would't take a break but what else can you do. They suck and will continue to do so for years to come.
Best of luck hope you still come on the radio here in KC.

Karte said...

Hey, 'real fans' - I think you are letting the team down by not spending every dollar you have on Royals merchandise.

I am a 'fair-weather' fan because I leave early when we get blown out (even though I own season tickets). I am a 'fair-weather' fan because I am sick of losing baseball for (ONLY!) 20+ years.

So you 'real fans' need to suck it up, take out a 2nd mortgage, work two or three jobs, and give all your money to the Royals. Anything less would make you a 'fair-weather' fan.

Over the winter, I am going to work hard to adopt another team.

Unknown said...

I've followed your writings on both here and the old Rob and Rany despite NOT being a stathead. This response is from the heart of a fan of the Royals since their inception.

My daily desire to track the Royals started by listening on the radio, then CNN's 30 minute updates, then FINALLY moving on to the 'net. I've always needed the Royals score and CRAVED any Royals info I could get, which is where YOU come in. Since Rob and Rany, you have been PART of MY Royals fandom.

I've ALWAYS blindly trusted the team's leadership to apply 100% of their knowledge and energy to building a successful franchise. It took your writing for me to finally "get it" that we can question things and offer up better solutions, though I still lean toward blind optimism.

I believe you are a true Royals fan and will continue to be one. I understand that you were hurt when the team dissed you after your Swartz article. You are clever and intuitive and much more of a stathead then me. You invested your own heart and energy have put a LOT of energy into this team like we do as fans. You seem to feel unappreciated as a fan and a psuedo-journalist.

We get ridiculed as fans or the Royals. I COULD have easily switched teams many times in my life. I lived in MD when Cal and Eddie were playing. I lived in VT when the Red Sox had Fred Lynn and Jim Rice. I lived in Arizona when the D'backs came into existence. I CHOSE to remain loyal to the Royals. Then. Now. And FOREVER! I hope you do too.

You have chosen nothing but negativity lately. Subjects like Yuni, Jacobs, relief pitching, and Guillen have been beat to death! We get that.

I would suggest you TRY to be positive. Why not a Moustakas post? I mean, you have no doubt heard the fans saying he is a bust. You know better given his playing against older competition, in a pitcher's League, in a home ballpark that is NOT conducive to offense, while still being among the League leaders in each of his two seasons. An argument could be made that he is one of the BEST prospects in all of baseball. But you haven't written that.

We get that besides Zack, Billy, Joakim, and a few very select prospects, there isn't much to be excited about. We get it!

I remember when you initiated the "nicknames" blog, the Disco Hayes musings, your support of Zack, and more positives. They were both fun and enlightening. Some of us want more of that. Almost Poz-like stuff... maybe a bit of "fluff". Sure, mix in hardcore analysis as that is your thing and you do it well. Continue to hammer the Jacobs and Guillen and Farnsworth debacles as they occur. We like that stuff too. But at least MIX IN some positives! lol

I think after the Swartz flareup, you went bonkers my friend. And I didn't disagree with your point of view either. But... POSITIVES!

Why don't you get it, man? Your blog has become part of OUR Royal fandom. Don't try to influence the Royals decision-makers, just enlighten your fellow fans. Share your insights and knowledge!

I would NEVER want you to be a Dick Kaegel who just spits out the company line and rediculous suggestions like DDJ as a Gold Glover. But SOME positive points. Some inside stories. Some more POZ-type stuff cuz' YOU have it in you. A man with your access to info, your ability to analyze it, and ability to articluate things clearly should not be "Done"! You owe it to us to continue, Buddy! lol Yep, you OWE it to your long-suffering Royals fanmates. lol

Jeez! I really must be sounding like a wanker but I knew I would. I just wanted to ENCOURAGE you.

Thanks for reading my rambling thoughts. Thanks for adding to my Royals journey for the past several years and please do NOT yank it out from underneath me!

Go Royals!!! C-ya, AusSteveW

Anonymous said...

Why would you possibly think that the Royals or or any other team would let something YOU wrote influence their decisions? Get over yourself. You're a skin doctor with a blog who went to one game this year.

Maybe if Trey Hillman gets a rash on his ass during a White Sox game The Royals might consult you, but that's about the only time they would or should.

Or course you've whined and cried this tune before without meaning it, so you;re probably full of shit this time too. I hope you have enough integrity to mean it this time and end "Whiny On The Royals" for good.

I'm sure they'll be some other pseudo-intellectual, hacky roto geek who only half-way understands the sport to take your place.

Sailor said...


Thank you for taking the time. The large amount of time that was put into this blog, that could have been spent with family and friends. It was a pleasure to read, and I always looked forward to the next post, even while feeling the despair of the nearly unwatchable product on the field, and the slipping of reality that permeates from the front office.

Personally I had stopped caring before the break, and knew as we all did that it was not going to turn around. I would tune into a broadcast just to listen to Denny, but emotionally detached myself from the scarce wins and prevalent losses.

I don't know if you have an N.L. team? but might I suggest the Giants. They are fun to watch, and have some rising stars. And Botchy is no Hillman. Just a thought.

Thanks again for the research, and the honesty. Take care.

Rany said...


Thanks for your very thoughtful email, including the criticisms - I think a lot of readers are thinking the same thing. You make a good point - that just because the Royals are, on the whole, headed in the wrong direction doesn't mean I have to dwell on the negative.

The Nick Swartz incident may look like a turning point for the blog, but I really don't feel I emerged from that specific incident as bitter or jaded. I'd like to think I emerged from it chastened - it was at that point that I realized the impact my words could have, and that the impact could go either way.

But I do think what's happened is that as I've become a more integral part of the media, I've learned more about the inner workings of the organization. From the first moment I started writing for Baseball Prospectus, I (and my colleagues) embraced the role of the informed outsider - we decided that it was better to evaluate what teams did from a distance, because if we gained access we might lose perspective.

I think that's what happened to me this year - I've gotten closer to the action than I ever have before, and I didn't like what I saw. You never want to see the sausage made before you eat it, and you never want to see how a baseball team goes about its business before you root for them. You never want to take things personally when you're part of the media, and I was starting to take some of the shenanigans by the front office personally. I'm generally a positive guy, and want to stay that way. It's for precisely those reasons that I need to take a sabbatical.

Hopefully I'll feel refreshed and ready to get back to writing next spring. I *want* the Royals to entice me into writing again. But another off-season like last year's - especially since Moore can't make everything better with another Greinke contract extension - won't get it done.

wetleg said...

Your posts will be missed. Here's hoping for a speedy recovery.

Jim M said...

(I am a different Jim)-Rany, I will miss you and your wisdom. I am sorry that we cannot escape from this team, but I have found that all I do is have a sad smile everyday when I see a win or a loss lately--strange. How did we end up with this team? Too bad an intervention by the league isn't possible. It does sound like someone felt sorry for Luke telegraphing his pitches(?). I guess that we are really that pitiful. But we have had some really good bloggers!! thank you again--(I should blame you, because you and Rob are who kept me excited about the team starting lo these may yrs ago ;-)

and person who has the nerve to post the rude offensive comment--I am ashamed of your behavior. Not sure how religion fits into any of this--so knock it off.

Spend some more time with the family and I hope that you use your wisdom on them. (they will listen more than the Royal Pains). Peace

Anonymous said...

>Yes, the Royals tried to jerk >your credentials.

They did no such thing. Before someone gets their credentials "yanked" they have to have been issued credentials in the first place. They don't give bloggers credentials. Not even bloggers whose ego is so big they feel like what they write should influence the decisions of a major league team

Besides that - why would someone who lives out of the state and goes to one game all season need press credentials? You don't need a press pass to watch baseball games on TV.

Anonymous said...

>>Anyone in here that says we're abandoning the team or something either A)Haven't been fans as long as we have so can't know the pain like we do, B) Haven't been as BIG of fans as we have and therefore can't know the pain like we do, or C)Aren't really fans to begin with>>

Bullshit. I'd bet you a dollar that I've been a Royals fan longer than most of you have been alive.

I was at the first Royals home game - and I mean EVER, not just this season. I have the foul ball I caught that game and the ticket stub framed right above my computer monitor

I've been to all of the Royals post season home games and all seven of the World series games in 1985

I'd estimate that I've been to about half of all the Royals regular season home games. And about a hundred of their AA/AAA games

I plan my vacations around spring training and Royal's road trips.

So please - don't act like you're some sort of hard-care old school super fan just because you can remember your dad taking you to see Mike Sweeney play.

And yes, i do think that Rany has turned into a pissy little bitch this year.

His writing used to be long-winded, but decent. But as his ego and crying soared the quality of what he writes has been in a free fall for most of the season to the point where I could care less if he never wrote another word about the teamor not

Anonymous said...

>>I was starting to take some of the shenanigans by the front office personally.>>

Yeah I'm sure they made moves just to spite a pimple doctor with a blog.

No out of control delusions of importance there, no sir!

AquariumDrinker said...

Thanks for your time, Rany. Can't wait until you write more when they cut Jacobs. I've very much enjoyed this site as a source of knowledge, wit, and honesty about our Royals.

And I'm sorry for all the posters denigrating you, and for all the wrong reasons they have for doing so.

I'll also be watching to see if Billy becomes the doubles king soon.


Anonymous said...

Enjoying a baseball game has nothing to do with whether or not the front office is following your particular (and largely correct, don't get me wrong) philosophy of player development. To swear off the team due to that indicates you're not actually a baseball fan who enjoys the game as such, you're just an overly self-involved stathead. I'm a stathead, too, but that doesn't mean I can't enjoy a game whether it's minor league, college, or 2nd division Major League -- who the GM is has very little impact on that aesthetic experience.

That said: free Kila Ka'aihue

Anonymous said...

I think you should keep on writing about the Royals, whether that be positive comments or negative comments. I don't see how you can let the fact that the Royals organization is not run properly affect your desire to write this blog. I am a life-long Royals fan (born in 1964) and will admit following the Royals was much easier back in the late 70's and early 80's, but they remain my favorite team and always will. I am not going to let thier poor management change my attitute towards the team. Just a thought, but I truly think this blog needs to continue.


Unknown said...

Rany-Though I often read your blog, before today I have never read the comments. My God...having to read some of those would be reason enough to quit writing in this format.
I would like to say thank you for all the enjoyment I have received (free of charge, even) from reading your thoughts, analysis, and criticism. You have been a voice of reason, intelligence, and common sense on a topic that we have shared a passion about, the Royals.
No one should question your loyalty to the team after considering the amount of effort you have put into this blog, Rob and Rany, and the radio show. You have given much more than most fans do their entire lives. Rest contentedly.
I will miss you. Reading your thoughts were often one of the few bright spots of being a Royals fan the past few years. Thanks again. Be well.

jml2424 said...

As someone who has followed your writing for many years and has no real emotional stake in the Royals (I live in Connecticut), I'll miss the blog.

I do think that you've let yourself become too much of a focus in your writing. When you said you were hoping to influence decisions, I know you were thinking about Seattle and Derek/Dave.

Clearly it can be done, but it might not have been such a great idea to ADMIT that was one of your goals.

It's funny that some of the commenters are upset you are a doctor and watching on TV. Folks, doesn't that tell you just how bad things are? That a dermatologist in Chicago has a better handle on how to run a baseball franchise then your general manager leads me to believe you shouldn't be shooting the messenger.

Brian B. said...

I do wonder why the people who consider Rany self-indulgent, too long-winded, and disloyal are reading his blog in the first place.

And it's cool that some people, including Rany, aren't in any way reconsidering Royals fandom. For me, the breaking point came when I realized that rooting for my favorite players -- Zack Greinke, Gil Meche, Joakim Soria, even Kila Ka'aihue and Chris Hayes -- probably means rooting for them to move to organizations that appreciate them instead of ruining their talents. I forget whose insight I'm stealing here, but: am I rooting for people or for laundry?

KCJC said...

Take your break Rany. You obviously need it. Get your batteries recharged and come back next spring ready to square it up.

Anonymous said...

Rany I believe this note speaks for the thousands who don’t post comments. Thanks, and please return your blog. (December would be nice) So… she goes

1. Thanks for the hundreds of hours worth of work and research
2. It’s just a game? My wife and I follow the team, and it’s more than a game for us. We followed the AA team this summer while on vacation instead of going to the K. Wish I could comment about how impressed we were, but at least the chicken rings in Springdale were tasty.
3. Adding to point 2, thanks again for giving thought provoking opinions!
4. Mother Theresa could have written a blog about the beauty of butterflies, and a few online goofballs would flame her, take the negatives in this light.
5. Probably as many, we quit watching or listening to KC games in early August due how poorly this team played.
6. Enjoy the NFL season and the best to you and your family!
7. 2010 Grienke 21-4, Butler 321-28-112, Meche 17-8, insert catcher 276-12-59 Jacobs playing first for Washington, Soria 32-197ERA…Hillman roaming motivational speaker Yanks…oh my we can dream

houstonGM said...

this is a great article! I don't understand why everybody hates keith law and rany. if you dont understand the importance of statistics and their analysis then LEAVE THIS PAGE! you aren't a baseball fan at all. statistics tell us who will turn out and who will not turn out and i'm sorry but if you dont like that, then obviously you were never a baseball fan to begin with.

Anonymous said...

With Rany taking a break, may Rob will come out of retirement and start a blog about the Royals (probably not). As a life-long Royals fan, I need my Royals links to read each morning (positive or negative) and am going to miss Rany:( Thank god for Royals Review, I must click on that website 20 times a day.

KC (again)

Anonymous said...

I agree with most everything you sat, including that we overpaid for Betancourt. But Yuniesky has hit .271 in August and September with an OBP of .320. Small sample size, yes, but If that is a return to form for him vs an abberation, then he is in the top 3rd of AL SS offensively which has some value.

Anonymous said...

I give you credit for lasting longer than I did. I basically gave up on this team before the All-Star break. One could remain interested if just the current players stank. There would be hope for new, better players someday. But when the front office stinks like a skunk that's three days dead, there's no hope for getting better players. Just more of the same. The world is full of wonderful alternatives to this constant heartache, so might as well try out some. Heck, if nothing else, find another team to root for. (I will miss your blog, though. It stayed interesting even when the Royals stopped being so.)

Bubba said...

First I just want to say thank you to Casper for his post. I was just going to leave it at that but after reading some of these comments I am going to go ahead and say what Rany should but won't say to some of you dumbasses...or "asshats" as I have seen a few times in these posts and I must say I have quickly taken a liking to.

If you don't like Rany or care for his "negativity" then don't read the damn blog. When you follow an organization as inept as this one has been for the past 20 years objectivity is not often going to yield positive posts.

For those of you who have said that Rany is self-aggrandizing or an ego-maniac, etc. I would offer up that Rany is no different than any other knowledgeable, hardcore sports fan. While I agree that it probably wasn't a very good idea for Rany to admit that an objective of his blog was to attempt to hopefully influence some of the front office's thinking/decision making, I think we all would probably want the same thing if we had the forum and following that Rany has built.

For those of you who have said that Rany is not a true fan I would argue the man has done more for the hardcore segment of Royals fandom than any of you. He has offered up thought provoking ideas and insight when often times, there didn't appear to be anything worth folllowing. He has graciously spent his free time with little to no financial compensation (sure he gets something from 810 for his show but likely not a lot) showing us not only why this organization has been a failure but offering up thoughtful suggestions of how we might remedy some of the things currently plaguing the organization. If you want sunshine and lollipops go be a fucking Patriots/Red Sox/Lakers fan but this is a Royals blog and sometimes its not pretty.

Oh and for you "Anonymous" cowards who make ill-fated attempts to somehow degrade Rany bc he is a doctor and not a "full-time baseball guy" or bc he doesnt go to more games...are you fucking serious? I mean the guy is a doctor and a husband and father and he somehow finds time to write for baseball prospectus, do this blog, a radio show, etc.... what exactly do you do with your life that somehow qualifies you as a more informed or knowledgeable baseball person? I honestly would not be surprised if this poster(s) is someone who works for the Royals. If that is the case I think that the results would speak for themseleves. Essentially, I suppose what I am saying is that Rany is most likely exponentially more knowledgeable than you about the game of baseball and the fact that he only follows the game IN HIS SPARE TIME and not as a full time job makes it even more ridiculous.

Oh and to Jeff who commented the below about one certain poster- do you really think a biggot piece of garbage like that has a "professional life"? I doubt it. The guy is probably a 36 year old redneck living in his mom's basement (think of A&E's new show "Hoarders" for a visual) playing World of Warcraft talking trash to 12 year old kids over his slick new blue tooth.

"Also, I wish there were a way to track cowardly anonymous comments. People who say things like that in public fora should have their professional lives ruined permanently."

Bottom line is, if you don't like the blog don't read the damn thing. I just had to get that off my chest.

Bubba said...

Finally, I would like to thank Rany for this blog as well as many of the posters who have offered up their ideas. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this blog and most of the comments over the past few years. As a 25 year old Royals fan who doesn't have too many friends that still follow the team that closely (I guess a lifetime of ineptitude will do that to people...okay I was alive in '85 but since I was a cognisant being the Royals have pretty much been awful) it is good to be reminded occasionally that there are others going through all of this along with me. Thank you Rany for providing the forum and the intelligent and thought-provoking commentary. I hope your time away brings you back energetic and positive next Spring and more importantly, I hope GMDM and the Royals provide you with some reason for optimism this offseason.

Go Royals,

Dave said...


Well done on your blog. I don't always agree with you but I always enjoy reading your thoughts. Always well written with well reasoned arguments. Maybe Moore will take a stats class at Johnson County Community College this winter and turn the ship around.

Jared Launius said...

I fully understand your hiatus, but this leaves us with one "modern" baseball writer that tries to shed light on how poor the decisions made by this organizations are.

Do what you need to do. But we can't afford to lose a syndicated, respected sports writer that writes constructively about what this organization needs to do by modern baseball standards. An average fan like myself looks to you as a representative of us at large. You've become the voice of the large group of Royals fans that are sick of seeing the same piece of poop wrapped in different paper each year. You, along with Poz, have developed into the conscious of this group of fans.

I think I speak for the rational, non-backwoods sect of the fanbase when I say that we look forward to your return. Enjoy your time off.

Carl Willingham said...

Negatively, blah, blah, blah. The man is negative because the situation warrants it. Please keep up the good fight Rany, you really are the voice of the majority of rational Royals fans. Best and most accurate blog entry I have ever read. Thanks for putting it all out there and showing how many bad decisions the pathetic organization has made in the past few years. As I have said over and over, anyone who thinks the Trey Hillman is the answer as a major league manager has no business with one of 30 jobs in the world leading a baseball team.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for all the posts. You can always do what i do. Watch the Cardinals and the best hitter in the game and watch the royals when Greinke pitches. It's not all bad. At least the Cardinals know how to run an organization.

Tubmin said...

Rany, thanks for all the posts throughout the season. Even when the team was playing miserably, I knew I could come here and be entertained and informed about the team. Hope we can hear from you again before February.

Let's hope for some good news in 2010.

Enjoy your break.

Unknown said...


Good work. I love reading your blog. Enjoy the off-season


Anonymous said...

As I tell my kids you should not worry about things that you cannot control. I also wish the Royals would do a better job in running the organization but there is absolutely nothing I can do about it, so I just sit back and enjoy the games the best I can. I truly wish you would continue to blog about the Royals because I would just bet that they are now fully aware of the benefits of statistical analysis because of your site and other sites that keep pounding on them about it. We can only hope that it sinks in enough that they start basing some decisions on it, but until then blog away and don't loose any sleep if they don't listen.

A Royals Fan, A Rany Fan and a Good Sleeper.

Anonymous said...

>>wonder why the people who consider Rany self-indulgent, too long-winded, and disloyal are reading his blog in the first place>>

Because there aren't really that many Royal blogs.

Just because "something is better than nothing" doesn't mean it's good

Mark said...

There's another excellent Disco Hayes post from Northwestern's page: Disco article

I actually think this is the best one I've read on Disco yet.

AJ said...

Your problem had hope. Hope is the last bastion of the damned.

There is no hope for the Royals. They will never be good again. Once you accept this fact, the easier it will be to live in reality. The Royals don't make me angry anymore, because I don't expect anything out of them.

One day before I'm old and gray...MAYBE they'll sniff .500 again. And I will enjoy that season to no end. I will talk smack to Red Sox fans...e-mail Peter Gammons about being a dick. You name it, I will run my mouth and use it for as long as I have.

But until then...


Anonymous said...

Rany I enjoy your blog and I enjoy the commentary you post.

But this "I'm Gone" stuff is stupid. If you are going to be weak like that then one the losers in the Royals office win and two it makes you look bad.

Eric said...

Rany: You are an excellent writer with great baseball insight. I hope you find yourself able to come back to this blog again at some point. Though I do get a kick out of the Royals going on another September (when it doesn't mean much) winning streak, I understand that a lot of changes still need to me made. Mike Jacobs is definitely at the top of the list. Several others will be driven by financial concerns, I'm sure. In the meantime, let's hope for the best even if we don't expect it - and also enjoy the teams that still get to play in later October (and maybe November).

Sean said...

Thanks for the blogging. Reading your articles made my day when watching a Royals game would ruin my night. This team has made me almost hate baseball for the last 3months. To think this same roster (with the payroll restrictions) will most likely be in tact next season makes me want to throw up. Let's hope we imploy a new "plan" because we are in dyer need of a roster blow up. Of the bottom 5 teams in MLB, you could argue we have the least major league talent. Brutal.

Anonymous said...

Self righteous? Sure.

Self aggrandizing? Yup.

Accurate? Disturbingly so.

Look folks, if you don't like it, don't read it. But ultimately, you can't argue with the point that GMDM has led the team into the abyss and there's no real way out.

And at the end of the day, was Rany unjustified in believing he could change things? He had an opinion, he expressed it. And you know what, the Royals listened. they considered him enough of a threat to ban him from the clubhouse and blackball him on radio. That's an effect, folks, even if it's not an intended one. Rany's comments are a threat to the status quo and the front office has responded to it. Trust me, if Rany wasn't making an impact, folks wouldn't bother to blackball him. If someone is beneath your contempt, you don't bother to attack them. Rany, whether you like it or not, is an influential enough voice that the Royals had to respond.

As for the cockbite who decided to make a racist comment, are you even a Royals fan or just some clown who decided that he was going to be hilarious? You're a sad, unfunny person. Fuck off, nobody needs jackasses like you.

I hope you come back to write, Rany, as self indulgent as it is. You've always had good insights, and a good mind. Ultimately, though, I hope whatever path you choose is a healthy one. Your bitterness over the royals can't be a good thing.

God speed.

Scott A said...

Does this mean you're lame radio show is over as well?

OJ said...


Thank you. I love this blog. I've feared for a while it would come to this. I am definitely sad.

Do you plan on writing about baseball in general in the meantime? If so, where? I'm not sure if I'm ready to face a Ranyless baseball universe. Let us know...

And thanks again!

Unknown said...

I agree 100%.

JohnHCh said...

To all those who have said that Rany was too negative/bitter/frustrated . . .

Let's not forget that Rany is the unreasonable, unrepentant OPTIMIST from Rob & Rany. When even the glass-half-full guys are jumping ship, you have to wonder how the team will retain its fan-base.

Jay in Houston said...

It's pretty clear that those who bash you do so out of envy. Your ability to draw a large readership to a blog about a middling team with horrible management says great things about your writing skills. Other fans just wish they could be so influential among the fanbase.

There's nothing wrong with hoping to influence the Royals' front office. I just wish there were more of you with a high skill level hoping to do the same thing.

Say what you will about the negativity, but it's completely warranted. These roster moves can't be defended and Moore refuses to take responsibility. As many of you mentioned, he deflects tough questions with pre-scripted talking points that seem as though they've been focus group-approved. It's unfortunate.

Somebody has to stand up to the management, and it either can't or won't be the local media. They need close access to the team.

Hopefully you have a big enough following that Moore and Glass read your posts and your comments and realize the level of animosity that currently exists in the fanbase.

Sure, they wouldn't read a blog with 10 readers, but when you're consistently drawing 80+ comments, that means your readership is in the thousands. Thousands of readers coming to the same place to read about a team with 100 losses. I assure you management reads this shit.

Eventually it will strike a chord.

Doug P said...

I enjoy reading your blog and will miss it if you do indeed quit. It is no doubt hard being a Royals fan but something that is impossible for me to get away from. I can't seem to pick any other team because the Royals are my team and always will be. They aren't Mr. Glass' or Mr. Moore's team, they are my team and KC's team. I don't understand why they do what they do, they are not very smart obviously but I will still be a die hard Royals fan, I just can't help it...I know most of can't, it is a curse!

TROLL said...

Boy, if I ever realized all the prerequisites for being a Royals fan, I probably wouldn't have become one back when Lou Piniella was roaming the outfield.

Reading this 'last' blog post from Rany was probably the saddest thing I have ever experienced as a Royals fan. Even sadder than that crisp fall night in '76 when I got to be one of very few Royals fans to personally witness the destruction of Mark Littell's career, courtesy of Chris Chambliss's bat.

Why sad? Because, the team's front office, by acting like the Nixon White House, have driven one of the few objective voices for hope and change to ground. And for some here to question the genuineness of his fandom because he has a life beyond writing about the Royals? Please.

Rany is probably the rarest, but also most devout of fans - he chose the team for which he roots, warts & all. He could just as easily opted for the Tigers, Orioles or even moved on to the Cubbies or the Pale Hose. His fandom is not just the result of geography, but also a conscious choice. To remain a fan under these circumstances takes devotion, even during the good times. I know of what I speak.

But reading this blog is so sad because of one sentence that Rany wrote, not in this post, but in the one immediately prior-

"For a Royals fan, hope always trumps reason."

Perhaps hope is not always enough after all. This East Coast fan isn't abandoning hope just yet, but it will take considerable changes to get me excited again.

And no, there is no truth to the rumor that David Glass is planning to erect an arch outside Kaufman Stadium to be inscribed "All Hope Abandon, Ye Who Enter Here"

Anonymous said...

I hope you have more patience as a Doctor than you do as a blogger.

Ken from Wichita

Anonymous said...

I'll miss reading your posts, Rany, but I completely understand the need to get away for a while. You obviously pour a lot of time, effort, and love into this. For that, I thank you.

I have no words of wisdom, just more words of woe. Once again, the Royals have made so many disastrous choices that I feel the best route to longterm health for the team is to cheer for losses and against current members, so that ownership/management realizes the futility of the current course. That's been the case in September far too many years running.

So, with every Betancourt hit or Colon out, I am saddened. They're obvious millstones -- obvious to everyone except the Royals front office. Hope for the team? Maybe, but only at the expense of most of the current roster.

Before I get too side-tracked, I will end by saying "Thank you" again. I, like many others, have appreciated reading what you have to say.

mike said...

"The definition of insanity is watching the same thing happen over and over and still expecting it to change the next time."

Stepping away seems a smart thing to do, even if it isn't all the way away.

I could give you a smile or a curse reaction by suggesting it is a curse left on the Royals after Denkinger gave them the 85 series, I suppose. Best wishes

Anonymous said...

You are on to something here & I feel your frustrations. KC will never be the baseball town it was in the 80's.

After 20 years following the Royals, I am officially "Giving up" on them. Although I will still root for them to win, I will never watch them or read about them. (Maybe if Greinke is pitching)

Go Rockies.

David said...

Thanks for the posts. We'll all miss your insight. Thanks also for the link to the article in which Moore reaffirms his faith in Hillman. I don't think I've ever read a better example of how not to lead an organization. It's really awesome that Hillman can have the kind of job stability that comes with bearing no responsibility for the results of those underneath him.

Chris said...

Ken from Wichita, Rany has the patience of Job when it comes to the Royals and I'd gladly be a patient of his. As JohnHCh wrote, Rany was the unrepentant OPTIMIST of Rob n Rany and held on a lot longer than some people. He's under no requirement to write a blog. He deserves a medal for his service to date. I don't agree with everything he writes but he always gives us something to think about. And that's all anyone of us can ask.

Thanks, Rany and hope to hear from you soon. Now you have more time to spend with your family. You can decide whether that's good or not. ;)

Red Sox Nation said...

Bill James, Grand Poobah of all that is sabermetric, long ago left the Royals and has joined us!

Join a team that is worthy of your sabermetric genius! Do it, Rany!

Anonymous said...

Oh My, without ROTR taking up 30 minutes of my life per lengthy post, (lengthy in a good way) what am I going to do? I can only look at obscene images for so long...You will be missed.

rone said...

The failure to find WMD in Iraq isn't political anymore. It's historical — much like Al Davis's failure as grand poobah of the Raiders. If you bail on the Royals, can i bail on the Raiders?

Anonymous said...

Rany, like many, I'm a fan of your blogs. You nearly always manage to balance your objective and informative posts with just the right dose of subjective fan enthusiasm; but it's simply impossible for a fan not to get high and low with his team (who among us hasn't pounded the couch when we realize the offense is going to leave Greinke with yet another ND?).

While the naysayers are entitled to their opinions, some of which are valid and credible, there's just no need for sheer ignorance, as some of these posts have displayed. Prominently. Many of us value your insight and efforts to share in your knowledge and zeal for the game.

Anyway, thanks, and I hope you come back after your sabbatical.

Ira said...

Being a fan of the game rather than a fan of a particular team can be a good thing. I was an Expos fans for years before MLB took it upon themselves to stab me in he heart, so then I was just a guy watching baseball. After a while, I found I'd adopted a new team (the Seattle Mariners - who might have been less well run than the Royals for a few year there, but then Bavasi got fired and now we're going to claim Disco in the Rule 5 draft).

Happy trails, Rany.

Brent said...

You’re done, and I'm disappointed. I understand your frustrations. I have been a loyal Royals fan for my entire life. I was just old enough to know that the Royals won it all in 1985, I was 7. My greatest sports hero was George Brett, and/or Frank White depending on my mood that day. In the 90’s I lost touch with the Royals. The Chiefs were the toast of the town, and the Royals only hovered around or below .500. Then a couple of years ago, on a whim I started watching the Royals again as their games became more readily available in my area. I started finding long suffering fans on the internet via blogs, and I started reading the KC Star. The best blog I found was Rob and Rany on the Royals. I was flabbergasted that there were hardcore Royals fans out there; Hardcore Royals fans that didn’t live in the KC area; Hardcore Royals fans in the national media. Then Rob left, but that was okay, because Rany was the half of Rob and Rany that I identified with. Now over the course of this season you have been beaten down, and you have relented the way Rob did. So now the voice of optimism is gone from the Royals blogosphere, and I am not blaming you for burning out. I am just disappointed.

Lawrence A. Herman said...

I'm not a Royals fan, but I read Bill James, and Rob Neyer, and Joe Posnanski, and you, and I'm becoming one by osmosis. Primarily, though, I read your blog because of the writing. I have this to say about your stopping the blog: Please keep writing. You rbitterness isn't a problem to me, becasue your writing is so interesting. If you can't write about the Royals, write about baseball in general. You can have a sub-blog called Rany on the (something else that begins with R but really means you'll be writing about baseball).

Please keep writing.

Please keep writing.

Steve from Fleming Island, FL said...

I will miss "Rany on the Royals" because it was free, unlike your posts on Baseball Prospectus. I know more about the Royals than a Phillies fan ever should, mostly thanks to Rob Neyer, Joe Posnanski, and you. Your entertaining and insightful posts will be missed by thousands of baseball fans -- not just Royals fans. You deserve a break, but I trust it won't be long before baseball fans can read you again, whether about the Royals or baseball in general. Thank you for many hours of enjoyment. And believe me, most of your readers enjoy the negative posts as much as or more than the hopelessly optimistic posts.

kcghost said...

I have enjoyed your columns and am saddened to see you travel the path of Bill James and Rob Neyer. I guess even a good man can take only so much bad news.

Had you seen/read Moore's little chat session over at the Royals site you would have had everything you said here reinforced. The guy even claims they are using sabermetrics to evaluate players. Honest to god he said that.

Hopefully you will be back in the Spring. Much success in the future.

JPM said...


John Parent said...

I have enjoyed your work over the past few months (since I discovered it). The Royals were one of the great franchises when i was growing up through the 80s.

As a Tigers fan, I recall despising KC because Frank White was viewed nationally as being better than Lou Whitaker, but I also grew to respect the players on those teams, White included. What has happened to the Royals franchise in the past 20 years has been a disgrace, and this is coming from a man who had to endure the 2003 Tigers.

I fully understand your frustration and bitterness. Your post was spot-on. Even as they are division rivals, I am hopeful that Kansas City can return to their once proud stature. I certainly feel for the fans of that ballclub.

Anyway, I just wanted to say thanks for allowing us to read your work and to see your passion. Be well.

Anonymous said...

Dayton Moore should commit seppuku!

JPM said...

Yes, it is so nice reading a condescending dermatologists opinions on the Royals that I don't think there is any way I can survive without it.

Oh, what will I do!?

Anonymous said...

Rany will be back. After an off-season of more idiotic, bonehead, impossible to believe, WTF moves by the Royals, he won't be able to contain himself. I'm looking forward to it.

Dan said...

Much like mid-season last year, I have stopped paying attention to the Royals as much as I can let myself. I have again tried not to get too attached, because watching them too close just infuriates me. I stay up to date by reading yours and Poz's blogs and watching little more than Greinke starts. I will miss reading you, and I hope that after some time off you will reconsider, but I sure understand your feelings. It wasn't that long ago that you were the optimistic one to Neyer's bitter old man. I think he even predicted your eventual loss of faith before he decided that he couldn't stand blogging about the Royals anymore. With Poz no longer at the Star, we are really going to need your insight to continue next year. You'll be recharged again by spring training, just maybe not so optimistic. And I've discovered that that's okay.

Brad said...


love your blog, and always tried to catch your 810 show when I could. Enjoy the blogging break, and get your batteries recharged. See you in the spring dude.

Tom in ATL said...

I have thoroughly enjoyed your thoughtful, thorough, and free(!) commentary since the Rob & Rany* days. As fellow members of your R&R readership have pointed out, the complaints here are ironic (and humorous) given that--between you and Rob--you're the irrational, glass-half-full-guy! I appreciate that you stuck around to voice your opinions on the Rs after Rob left. I've considered you and Poz (and to a degree, Sam M) to be the fans' representatives. Without your services, all KC baseball fans got was organizational spin from Star and reporters. I share the sentiments and wishes of a previous commenter--that you continue writing on baseball, regardless of topic. As with Greinke, I'd hate to see your talent go to waste covering such a miserable organization. But unlike Greinke, you're not bound by contract--you should feel free to "play" for another team (or teams)!
Best regards,

gsmith601 said...

I really hope you write after the season on the off season deals. Understand the Kila disappointment, I was hoping he would get called up. After watching him all season in Omaha though, not once did I think he was going to be anything that would really help in KC. Yeah I would have given him a shot but he just looked very, very average at the AAA level this year.


Anonymous said...

What to do?

This summer, I decided I needed a new hat and was so frustrated with the Royals that I had to go with another team. I know, I'll go with my childhood team - oops, that's the Pirates and they stink. How about another childhood team, the Orioles - oh yeah, they stink too. I know, the Cardinals - nah, can't do that and live in KC (moving for a team is not currently an option). So, what did I do - I bought a Bass Pro Shop hat to wear until football season when I brought out my Steelers hat!

Unknown said...


I just wanted to thank you for letting me vent about my own Royal's frustrations by simply reading about yours. They say that misery loves company and you have been about the best company a miserable Royals fan could ask for. I was born on October 1st, 1985 and was on this earth for the world series, but have never witnessed a Royals playoff game in my entire life. I just wanted to say that i appreciate your "negativity." It's constructive criticism that is well deserved. Anyways, thanks for always being the one who puts my frustrations into words, when even I can't. Keep with it Rany...

Colin said...

I've loved this blog ever since you started it. Sorry it hasn't been much fun for you the lately. I personally think you're doing exactly what the Royals want you to do though.

Jason said...

Just started reading your blog last year.
Get the rest you need from writing. And I need to remind myself to never read a comments section again. What a bunch of turds.

Anonymous said...

Dayton Moore should commit seppuku!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for all the work pulling stats amaze us with the view and perspective that gives us. And 20 years of stats tell a story that shouldn't be, but is ignored. I was a huge Royals fan back in the 70's and can't see any resemblance in today's team.
Living in Minneapolis, I see the whole Central division being very weak, and that means KC is the weakest of the sad. No shades of UL or Brett, or Quisenberry, or Willy Wilson, etc.

But true baseball fans are optimists if anything. So let's hope for a great off-season of horse-trading!!

Anonymous said...

To: Rany

From: Loyal Reader

Probably not a good idea to take a "hiatus" when your trying to get a loyal following to your blog. I usually check this site about every other day to see if anything new has been written about the Royals, but now don't see the point in clicking on this site at all. Cannot understand why you cannot just write about the team and not let the bad decisions by Royals management undermine what was a very successful blog. Blog away and don't take it personal that the Royals want to do it their way.

In short, I think you are making a bad blog management decision by taking a break. I would write a 4000 word blog about it, but think you get the point.

Anonymous said...

A Falcon Punch Would Solve All Of This!

D. Kuzanek said...

As a life long White Sox fan (keep reading anyway), I did in fact root for the Royals in my youth (let's say the early 70's). They actually had players of the major league variety. And they were good. And they had some damn lengthy careers.

The point is, the White Sox had some HORRENDOUS teams in the 70's through early 90's. Yes, we got the long awaited WS win in '05. But please note that recent changes have shown that we are regressing, ie. Alex Rios, Colon, Contreras (He Gone!)and the beloved Jermaine Dye with his second straight 2nd half swoon.

Root for the players. It's not their fault they were called up or can't hit major league pitching or can't strike out your grandmother. If you want to hate the front office, that's fine. If you want to boycott the games, that's fine, too. But don't blame the players (unless of course, you have a Soriano or Bradley like the other club in Chicago.

You can still be a fan...that's the beauty of the game. It's a GAME.

How do you think the Cub fans feel? 100+ years with nothing to show for it. They're either the best (or dumbest) fans in the world.

Coming from the South Side, you can figure out what I think.

Keep the faith...

Unknown said...

I enjoyed reading your blog and listening to your show this year. Oh wait, the year isn't over or the season for that matter. You quit on us!!!

Anonymous said...

I always have enjoyed your insight on the Royals and I hope you do not stop writing this Blog. I really look forward to it and it helps to read good informed opinions. it helps me channel my frustrations to see others working out thier issues and share the same view. This year has been a very long season and I don't blame you for taking a break. However I really hope you come back to share your thoughts on the offseason. I know there will dissapointments in who we keep but I hope there is some good news in who we trade and pick up. I want to read you opinion so please don't stop writing. I understand your frustration but like I've read nefore we should not get too wrapped up in one player. let's not hitch our ride to the Kila train and get burned the way we did on Gordon or Hoch. let's keep watching and see if we learn. it does not look like we did this year but there will be good things to come. If anything Glass has at least shown some semblance of caring and DM can still get fire, extension be damned if he does not turn things around. Glass is clueless but understand if you lose the fans you lose money. I think Glass is a terrible owner but I do know at the least he cares or he would have sold us out years ago. keep the faith that good things will happen in the winter and remember no team, no matter how good they are will ever satify the fans. Every team's front office will be "dumb asses", make terrible trades and sign stupid free agents in the eyes of the fans. Hell people piss and moan about the Red Sox & Yankees all the time but they still win. Point is we can't give up the ship becuase GM's are forever every genious becomes stupid at some point in their career. looking forward to reading more from you in the future.


Anonymous said...

We just signed Crowe, can't be all bad. Come back to write on this and anything else good for the organization as a whole

Anonymous said...

Don't let the door hit you...

Anonymous said...

Dayton Moore should commit seppuku!

Grant said...

Hi Rany,

Totally understand your decision to step away for awhile. Much better that you have fun. Can't wait to hear from you again (hopefully!)

Grant and Lyndsey

Anonymous said...

I bet you were wishing you had never went the "I'm Done" route now. How exactly do you come back from that now even if you wanted too? Swallow your pride and kick out another blog before this year ends.

Fast Eddie said...

Late Bulletin: Yabuta has been released by the Royals .... and signed by the Chiefs!

Unknown said...

NOT being a smarta#$ but... is it just a coincidence that your Original Post was done on 9/11?

Didn't think so.

Anyway... the Royals are WINNING and no matter what... no matter when... that means SOMETHING! I wish I knew what it meant to YOU, Rany! *smile*

Come back already! And tell us about winning... tell us about Zack's CY chase... tell us about Crow's signing... tell us about prospects in the 4 to 7 range for next year's draft as it seems more and more likely that we will picking that late now. Come on! There is plenty to talk about!

Go Royals!!! C-ya, AusSteveW

K.C. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
K.C. said...

Thought some would be interested to know that this article got hyperlinked in a Jeff Passan column on Yahoo about why Greinke is going to get shafted out of the Cy Young award. Here's the link:;_ylt=AvyzuQk8b3lqBki3PtmOVkYRvLYF?slug=ge-greinke091709&prov=yhoo&type=lgns

Like all things Royals, its pretty depressing.

Unknown said...

Since Anonymous continues to crave attention, i'll give it to him, w/ this response.

Since the main point of the act was to restore or protect one's honor as a warrior, those who did not belong to the samurai caste were never ordered or expected to commit seppuku.

Dayton is no samurai my friend. . .

Anonymous said...

He may not be a samurai, but he is a disgraced leader. Disgraced leaders in World War II often committed seppuku when they were defeated, samurai or not. Unsuccessful businessmen have committed seppuku. So a miserable failure of a GM should consider it, too.

I stick by what I said: Dayton Moore should commit seppuku. It is the only way he can atone for his gruesome litany of baseball failure. He should cut his gut open at home plate following the last game of the Royals' season.

Anonymous said...

8-3 since Rany jumped ship

Should have done this 5 years ago

Anonymous said...


Since you've had a few weeks to simmer a bit, I would like to hear your take on recent developments from a statistical/sabermetrical/Ranyacal point of view. For instance, has plate discipline improved over the last few weeks, or are the Royals just hitting more of the balls at which they're swinging? What are your thoughts on Butler "chasing" McRae's obviously astro-turf-inflated doubles record? Tejeda's sudden rise as a viable starter? Greinke's obvious dominance? Betacourt's inability to hit a baseball anywhere near the center of the bat? Anything?


Anonymous said...

I'm Done, means your done, so don't even think about coming back. Your 5 minutes is up and we can all find another source for Royals info.

John said...

For those that are curious, I pulled out the old calculator and figured out for Zack's ERA to drop below 2.00 he needs to pitch 9 more consecutive scoreless innings...that would give him a 1.999 ERA. Or if he pitched 10 it would be 1.990, allowing it to round down to 1.99 in the stats. Or, if he's not perfect, he can give up ONE earned run over the next 14 innings (approximately two starts) and still get there at 1.994, also rounding down to 1.99.
So, assuming four days rest he will get two more starts this year, one this Sunday at home against the Twins, and then again next Friday at Minnesota. So, if he goes 7 innings in each, he can only give up ONE earned run. That would be AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!

Matt Berger said...


Matt Berger said...

apparently some people don't understand that hiatus doesn't mean he's done forever, just be patient when the cy young is announced he'll have to comment, whether its Zack or King Felix he'll share his thoughts

Anonymous said...

leave him alone, he's still stewing about the Royals not taking his advice and bringing up Kiiahue and Disco.

Uncle Buck said...

Why would you ever post a negative comment here? To do so must be a sign of stupidity. If you don't like Rany or his thoughts on baseball and the Royals, then somehow train your fingers to type something other than

Anonymous said...


Long time Royals fan & I just started reading your blog this year. I've looked forward to your posts because you express the same feelings I have with the Royals, and you do so better than I could ever hope to. Don't be discouraged by some of the numb nuts on this board. There are plenty of people in this world who react with a visceral response whenever someone utters something counter to what they think.

I'm always intrigued where I can find useful life lessons, and I found one the other day in a sitcom I think applies to your situation (stick with me here). You can write your blog to satisfy folks like me that want to hear what you have to say. Or, you can stop writing because of the naysayers. Either way, you’re actions are driven by someone else. Do what’s right for you, and it sounds like you are. Step away, get some perspective. For the sake of my baseball knowledge, and my Royals sanity, I hope you’ll find writing fulfilling again.

JW(not that one)

JPM said...

Uncle Buck--

Just like your boy Rany has a right to take a hiatus or cry "I done", people here have a right to be critical of a condescending know-it-all.

He puts himself out here, so expect the criticism. If he wants to be slurped up and down then maybe you can exchange loving emails with each other.

sw said...

Rany, surely you have something to say about Nick Schwartz's retirement?

Unknown said...

Please end your hiatus soon. There is soooooo much to talk about as you can tell from the past several comments.

I would expect that you have some thoughts about Billy Butler's near-gaudy numbers too. It has been a tight race between him and Callaspo for the team's lead in Batting Average but Billy is starting to pull away. Plus he will soon pass Olivo for the team lead in dingers and already leads in RBIs. He is looking more and more like the professional hitter MOST of us thought he would always be!

Anway.... look forward to reading more from you as soon as you can muster up the stomach for further Royals discussion!

Go Royals!!! C-ya, AusSteveW

RDC said...

-aj said...

Nick Schwartz (sp?) is gone, you need to come back. After the game on 610 tonight, when they announced he will be retiring, they spoke of "certain bloggers" who felt he mishandled the team and how they disagreed... Good for them, let them eat their retirement cake and regurgitate the company line. Given the state of our pitching staff, I rather look at it like he is resigning amidst scandal. He is the Richard Nixon of trainers. I don't think it's a coincidence that he's calling it a day the same season you made the town aware that he's the one in charge of our injured circus.
Don't be done. Maybe you're not directly responsible... but i think this is you effecting change in the Royals organization.

Anonymous said...

Why is this URL still active, if your "done", please close this site down. We must keep the internet free of dead sites so my internet does not get clogged up.

Al Gore
Inventor of the Internet

P.S. And you thought I was just sitting at home enjoying my retirement. Keeping track of these dead sites keeps me busy.

K.C. said...

LOL. For all of you idiots that are yelling at him to go away and never come back, try reading the top of the page.

"Rany on the Royals - where we're on HIATUS, no matter how much Nick Swartz's retirement has tempted us."

In case you're stumped on the definition of hiatus, he's still around, and he'll be back. Just probably not until the offseason.

Anonymous said...

I saw this in the notes section of the September 27 game recap - Royals trainer Nick Swartz, who's retiring after 33 seasons with the organization, threw out the ceremonial first pitch. The entire roster joined him on the mound - tell this is just a coincidence. Does anyone know if Swartz had planned to retire?

Fast Eddie said...

According to the Chicago Tribune, the Royals are "high" on Milton Bradley. I am not making this up.

Anonymous said...

Bradley and 12 million for Guillen. I do that deal in a heartbeat.

Anonymous said...

Dayton Moore should drink hemlock!

(since there were objections to my suggestion of seppuku)

Anonymous said...

Thanks Ramy. I've learned a lot about baseball from reading your blog this year. Statistics and how to apply them have a whole new meaning for me. Good luck in your future endeavors.

Unknown said...

Dear Mr. Hillman,

When we saw the 8th inning end tonight with a 1-run defecit, we were all soiling ourselves at the thought of facing Soria in the 9th! But instead, you brought in Kyle "the BS doesn't just mean blown saves" Farnsworth and graciously forfeited the game to us. It means a lot to get that 102nd win at this time. We will repay in kind this winter by very generously offering your general manager Chuck Knoblauch straight up for Zack Grienke. Don't say we don't know how to repay favors!

Sincerely, the New York Yankees

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your current body of work, Rany. I've followed for 4-5 years now, since it was you and Rob together. I grew up in JoCo a KC fan but have now had the fortune of living in 3 other championship cities. The pleasure is vicarious -- I just wish KC could experience it again. There's nothing like it, and I gnash my teeth just like you do at so much of Dayton's destruction.

Speaking of Dayton, God, why can't I get him to play in my fantasy league? Oh, yeah, because he'd ruin it by all his freaking vetoable trades. The Veto Commission would be permanently convened. The Veto Commission would never be able to go home. See ya' in April. Cheers.

Unknown said...

Someone recommended reading this post. I agree with most of your points. I know for myself (I'm 20 years old) I don't have any sort of "glory days" to hold on to. That said I've been a die hard Royals fan my whole life. I hope that the organization will get there act together. I went to the new Royals Hall of Fame, and got to see a video of the Royals in there prime. If that doesn't get you yearning for a winner, I don't know what will.

Wabbitkiller said...

Rany, I certainly can't blame you. Apathy has set in for me as well, and the ONLY reason I give a crap about AHYTHING Royals related right now is because of the fact that Greinke IS going for a Cy Young. It's ironic that locking up Greinke is perhaps the ONLY move that Dayton Mooreon made this past offseason.

Speaking of Dayton Mooreon, I have to give a big shout out to him while I'm at it (and I apologize for my language in advance):


After being a lifelong fan of the Royals (been a fan since I was six years old. I started following the Royals during the 1977 season), I am FINALLY getting to the point were I don't even care anymore.

The Royals have their heads buried so far up their asses that not even a tractor at a tractor pull can get their heads to see the light of day. What's the point in supporting (and caring) about a team that is REDEFINING stupidity from top to bottom? Screw Dayton Mooreon, Screw Trey Hillman, Screw the Royals. At least I still have the T-Bones!

Art said...

Just my luck to finally find an insightful and informative blog about Royals baseball...shortly after the author decided to call it quits. After you have a little while to focus on more positive things than the Royals, please consider reinstating your work again.

Unknown said...

I'm betting Zack beats the Twins and gives up either ZERO or one run. If he does that or even just gets the win no matter how many runs... he SHOULD lock up the Cy Young Award.

I'm also betting that Rany will HAVE TO come back and post about the Jonah if/when that happens. Come on, Rany! Come back NOW! *smile*

Go Royals!!! C-ya, AusSteveW

Anonymous said...

Give it up people, Rany is gone!!!

Anonymous said...

Shit. The one thing I was afraid of happening....happened. Not completely shelled, but hit hard. If that last start costs Zack, I'm burning down something......

Unknown said...

I am disappointed as well. But Zack still had a FANTASTIC season. It is just a shame he didn't throw up a gem in this last game. It would have been sooooooo cool!

Having said that.... I feel bad for Zack because he did perform better than MOST would in that situation. He was facing a very hot team in front of THEIR home crowd and his downfall was started by an MVP-caliber player in a good matchup.

I guess it is just part of our Royals fan experience to endure this bit of a downer. Sports fan misery or something like that is what JoPo referred to it as this morning.

The only good thing about it is that the Tigers lost too so now tomorrow's game is for all the marbles in the AL Central. Hoch gets to experience some pressure. Maybe he will throw an 80 pitch shutout. Could he? Will he? We'll see!

Go Royals!!! C-ya, AusSteveW

ZACK STILL WINS THE CY!!!! (hopeful)

Anonymous said...

The shame of it is DeJesus catches that ball that Bloomquist couldn't run down (and got a glove on). Then Zach gets out of the inning unscathed. Of course, King Felix was dominant in his start. For the first time, in a long time, I don't think Zack wins....and that is sad.

sw said...

On the "relax" front, I follow the Yankees fairly closely and read all the New York papers online baseball sections. Columnists in the NY Post, Daily News, and Newsday all picked Zack as their AL Cy in the paper, and so did two writers from the Journal News in a chat, plus the NY Times has written multiple glowing columns about Zack throughout the year and predicted him to win the Cy Young before the season even started. Now I don't think any of the particular writers of those columns have actual AL Cy votes, but it's a snapshot of how much respect he's commanded this season from the biggest market in America.

MPJ said...

It's funny for someone who is done that the top saying keeps changing. lol

K.C. said...

Sigh...doesn't anyone know what "hiatus" means? A pause, a break, temporary stop. TEMPORARY.

*grumble grumble*

KQuent said...


I think the fact that the title is "I'm done" might have something to do with that.

Anonymous said...

I can't relax. I'm so used to getting kicked in the teeth, having the rug pulled out from under me, always waiting at the back of the line, etc. We never win and even when it looks like we are going to, something happens. Until the award is announced on November 17th, I'm a nervous wreck.

Anonymous said...

Dayton Moore should drink hemlock!

(since there were objections to my suggestion of seppuku)

JPM said...

He's done because he is so upset with the Royals, but he is telling us to "relax."

Isn't that rich!

Anonymous said...

Seems as though this comment section in now the Royals Blog site, who needs Rany?

Anonymous said...

Seems as though this comment section in now the Royals Blog site, who needs Rany?

Anonymous said...

I swear that I only hit the enter button once!!!

Anonymous said...

I can't wait unitl Novermber 17th, I want to know now!

Anonymous said...

Above blogger, I know "now" that you have no life.

Jack said...

I know what that guy is talking about. I wish they didn't wait so long to announce the winners of the awards. What's the point? The votes were due last week. Announce it and get it over with.

Anonymous said...

Was that Rany in that hot air baloon over Colorado yesterday?

Anonymous said...

Question: Why did the Royals close down their Web Page?

Answer: I has become extremely difficult for them to string together 3 W's.

Anonymous said...

Anyone home? Rany, Rany, Rany are you here?

Anonymous said...

I hope there are no charges against Rany for that whole Balloon incident in Colardo.

Anonymous said...

There seems to be holes in Rany's story about how he tied town the tethers on the Balloon. Hopefully he can still do the blog from prison if that is what he gets.

Anonymous said...

There seems to be holes in Rany's story about how he tied town the tethers on the Balloon. Hopefully he can still do the blog from prison if that is what he gets.

Dayton Moore said...

Come back Rany.

Todd Applebaum said...


I know you are frustrated, but you should come back to post again - I am a cubs fan but follow the royals due to a brief stint living in KC in the late 90's. More importantly, I just follow baseball and I enjoy your royals blog. I hope you can come back after taking some time off and getting a mental break from the train wreck that is the Royals organization.


Anonymous said...

I heard your thinking about another Balloon trip, don't do it Rany, I beg of you.

Anonymous said...

Rany, don't follow in the footsteps of Bill Heeter and the guys who wrote the Daily Lancer. Even lousy teams need blogs!

Anonymous said...

come on Ranny.. nothing on the new trainer?? I am hurt.

Nicky Swartze said...

Looks like Rany got one of his wishes now the they got a new trainer.

I wonder if Rany will bring his "ball" back and play again.

K.C. said...

On a note only slightly related to the Royals:

Here in KC we dream about our outfield performance if we'd been able to keep Beltran, Damon, Dye and Ibanez (pick 3). How bad must Cleveland fans have felt last night watching Lee vs Sabathia in game 1? Both former, recent, Cy Young winners for the Indians, starting a WS in a season where Cleveland finished dead last. For at least 1 night, I was glad I'm a Royals fan. And definitely glad that Greinke is locked up for a few more years so I don't have to wonder what uniform he'll be wearing for his game 1 start next fall.

JMC said...

The Royals overhauled the training staff...vindication?? I understand your staying away from the team but you got to have something to say on this right?

gsmith601 said...

Nice to see they have completely overhauled the training staff.

Mark said...

Rany! Please comment on the possible trade rumor I heard today. Mark Teahen to the White Sox for Chris Getz and Josh Fields. On the surface, it sounds like a good deal for the Royals, but I'd love to hear your take on it.

Dave said...

I think it is a pretty good trade. I really like Teahen but we weren't going to win anything with him. Both Getz and Fields are young and inexpensive. Getz gets on base about as well as Teahen and has better speed. I don't know how his defense grades but maybe this means we are getting ready to move Callaspo in another trade or straight to DH. Fields has flopped so far, but I thought it was a bad idea for the Sox to give up on him. He could still pan out. I don't know how his defense grades either, but I'd like to see him in the OF. Since he also plays 3B, could it be that something is going on with Gordon as well?

gib4ksu said...

These trades are terrible. Just another example of how Dayton doesn't give a damn about OBP or OPS.

Rick said...

Getz can get on base, moron.

gib4ksu said...

OBP: .324
OPS: .670

OBP: .325
OPS: .724

OBP: .331
OPS: .749

gib4ksu said...

My bad Rick. I didn't realize you work for the KC Royals. With your statmaster knowledge, I now know why you are a perfect fit for Dayton Moore.

Uncle_Buck said...

I know I sound like a psycho-ex GF, but...Rany, baby, please come back. I have to know what you think about this trade.

Rick said...

I know you are at a disadvantage with your K-State education, but if I'm so bad at stats can you explain to me how going from an OBP of .325 to .324 is a downgrade? I'll give you your OPS, but when you factor in he can play a solid 2B, was 25 for 27 stealing bases, and is pre-arbitration eligible compared to Teahen's 4 million plus I think that is a good deal. Not to mention you get all the power potential that Fields brings to the table. Hopefully a new team unlocks all of that. So when you are done whining about the drop of .054 in OPS, re-think your position. I accept your apology.

Unknown said...

Rany, if you are still reading the comments and feel the urge to blog about the Teahen for Getz/Fields trade ... resist! While I like the trade on the surface for the Royals, Fields and Getz are kind of redundent on the current team. So while this trade in a vacuum is good, if Dayton turns around and trades any of Callaspo, Gordon, or Ka'aihue for a bag of used BP balls and a box of staples, then it will just bring more heartache and misery. So my recommendation, despite the clammoring of the crowd, is to hold off until the winter meetings in December to make sure this decent move isn't just the prelude to a few disasterous moves later in the offseason.

Anonymous said...

Gordon isn't going anywhere. And Callaspo off of second is a plus, not a minus. If they DH him great, but wouldn't you rather flip him for some OF help, catcher, or SP?

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