Monday, December 10, 2012

my reaction to the royals / rays trade ...

Oh boy.

Rany Jazayerli is on the record with his two word post on his personal blog (linked on the side of this site) ... and with more than two words on Grantland.

Y'all know how much I love Rany as a writer, and as a fan of the team we love.  Hell, nine years ago, I spent a 109 degree Sunday afternoon sitting in left field with him and Rob Neyer for Rob and Rany at the Royals day.  There were maybe 8 of us stupid enough to show up -- and it was a mid August battle between first place KC and second place Minnesota.  I sweated through the whole nine innings, enjoying the hell out of getting to pick two great baseball writers' minds for three hours.

I could not disagree more with his assessment of the trade.

I spent half the day text messaging with my buddy Jasson (who, in a really welcome development, either was so moved by the Chiefs / Panthers post, or he's drunk dialing me, because I've heard more from him in the last week and a half, than I had in the last year and a half, and that's a very happy development), and I guess, we're the only two people who agree why this was a good thing.

Gang?  The chips have been shoved to the center of the table.

For the first time since the 1993 offseason, a full twenty freaking years ago ... the Royals are all in it, to win it.

For the first time since Opening Day 2004?  This isn't about next year.  It's about this year.

Did the Royals overpay for James Shields and Wade Davis?  Well sure they did.  Did the Dodgers overpay for Zack Greinke (6 years, $146 million)?  Of course they did.  If the Royals (and as long as David Glass owns this team, this will be true), if the Royals refuse to overpay in money for top flight talent?  Then they have to overpay for it with prospects.

And if trading away someone with, according to the metrics, an 86% chance of becoming a future All-Star, yields a division championship in 2013, an LCS berth in 2014, and scorched earth after that in 2015?

Give me the division championship, give me the LCS berth, and the hope for 2015.

This wasn't a Jose Lima type desperation signing in 2003 that somehow came up all seven's (for a season, anyways) when the lever was pulled.  This wasn't a "take a chance on a veteran retread" gamble that paid off, like Paul Byrd in 2002, Jeff Suppan in 1999.  This wasn't wildly overpaying for the best option on the market that would say yes, out of desperation, like Gil Meche in 2006.

This was acquiring a dude who, if this had been the Olympics, would have been on the podium receiving a medal, when it comes to Cy Young voting, this past season.  And upgrading the fourth slot in the rotation from Luke Hochever, to someone who's shown he can get the job done.

And did I mention, Shields and Davis (if he starts; he spent 2012 as one of the league's best relievers) now can join Guthrie and Santana in the rebuilt rotation?  NONE of these four guys was here on Opening Day 2012.  ALL of them are better than anyone that was in the Opening Day 2012 rotation.

And Felipe Paulino and Danny Duffy await their return in late June / early July.  And maybe I'm just f*cking retarded, but I think Bruce Chen, as your fifth starter?  Isn't a bad option every couple of weeks when you need him.

As Jasson noted on about our tenth text message: "how much does this (Chiefs season) suck that we're talking baseball in December?"

As I wanted to respond: "how awesome is it that we're talking baseball in December ... and it's a good thing for the hometown team?"  (But as I did respond: "I bailed (on the Chiefs) for the NBA a month ago.")

Today was a good day, guys.  Today, for the first time since August 31, 2003, when Allard Baird traded some spare parts to bring in Rondell White and Brian Anderson for the stretch run, the Royals pushed their chips into the middle of the table, and went all-in.

Somehow, I think James Shields and Wade Davis?  Is a better hand to risk the house on, than Rondell White and Brian Anderson.  Even if I do miss hearing "Dr. Feelgood" during Mr. Anderson's warmups.  God, no wonder I'm in therapy -- I was a 2004 Royals full season ticket holder!  So THAT'S where I started to lose it!  Jesus, if I'd thought of that ten months ago, I'd be a couple thousand dollars better off ...

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