I am very proud to be a blogger. I am proud to be a member of the large, passionate community that blogs about the Kansas City Royals. For so many people to have so much passion for a franchise that has been so bad for so long, is quite impressive.
The blogging concept is an evolving form of media. It is mainly based on the opinion of the writer, and if executed properly, that opinion will not be sensational in nature, but based on the interpretation of fact. I think the bloggers who cover the Royals on various websites do a tremendous job of conveying their opinions in smart, original, responsible ways based on their analysis of the available data. I am a fan of several different sites and writers, and I am thrilled to be counted as one of their peers.
One thing, though, continues to irk me. And it probably only irks me. I am tired of all the continued negativity that still finds its way into way to many posts and tweets about the trade that sent Wil Myers and others to Tamps Bay for James Shields and Wade Davis. At the time, I was one of the few bloggers who was a big fan of the move. Most railed against it vehemently, and it was fun for me to read the various opinions and explanations.
The problem for me is that it is seven months later. James Shields has been everything the Royals and their fans could have wanted. He HAS pitched like an ace. He was a 2.72 ERA, a 1.123 WHIP, .8 HR/9 IP, 2.5 BB/9 IP, and a 8.1 K/9 IP – all excellent numbers. Yes, he only has 2 wins but everyone knows that is not his fault. In the 15 games Shields has started, the Royals are only 7-8 but in those 8 losses, Shields has only allowed more than 3 runs once. He has also pitched at least 6 innings every single time he has taken the mound.
Shields’ performances aren’t the point for many detractors, though. Those folks will argue that 2 years of James Shields, for a team not built to win overall, was not worth the cost of 6 years of Wil Myers. Okay, I understand the point you are making; I just don’t agree with it. That’s fine and dandy. The discussion has been fun – up to a certain point.
The point of my contention with some of the otherwise great sites and writers out there is that – Look, we get that you didn’t agree with the trade. Fine. But why harp on it for so long, or why mention it in every thing you write? As of now, the full results aren’t in, and won’t be for quite some time. The Royals haven’t NOT made the playoffs yet. Will Myers has not been awesome yet. In fact, he has only been up with the Rays for a few days and he has only gone 3-17 (.176) thus far.
Is it really necessary to tweet every successful at bat Myers has (luckily there haven’t been very many yet)? Are we going to have to deal with that every time he gets a hit over the next six years? I hope not. I follow a lot of guys on twitter because I find them either informative or funny, and I would hate to stop following people I like because they just won’t let this Myers thing go. I probably wouldn’t do that but it certainly is annoying at times.
There are enough issues with the team we have right now that we should not have to go looking at players on other ball clubs. I understand we all miss the hope of the possible future potential of Wil Myers but can you imagine how much everyone would be complaining if Luke Hochevar was still in the rotation.
The fact is, as hard as it is to believe, the Royals are only 5 1/2 games out of first place in the AL Central. That’s a fighting chance? Not much of one, but at least more than we have had in the last few seasons. Two games ago, the Royals were at .500, the latest in the season the Royals have been even in the Dayton Moore Era (that sad truth is another subject). This team is better because of the pitching staff. James Shields has much to do with that. He keeps the Royals in games, and everyone hopes for miracles late. It is so much better than being out of the game by the 4th inning (or earlier), which was the case so often in past seasons.
In all honesty, the Royals offense has been much worse than most thought it would be back in March. We didn’t really think it would be good, but we didn’t think it would be this awful. Most of us thought (or at least, desperately hoped) Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas would take big steps forward. That hasn’t happened yet. We hoped Billy Butler and Alex Gordon would repeat their 2012 performances; we are still hoping. Sal Perez has been good, and Lorenzo Cain has had his moments. We all know Chris Getz and Jeff Francoeur were going to be giant voids in the line ups, and that has been the case.
We all hope that the offense cannot be as bad in the last three months as it has been in the first three months. It can’t, can it? I just don’t see how having Wil Myers in right field (who knows if, or how long, he will struggle playing every day as he adjusts), and Luke Hochevar and Bruce Chen in the rotation would make Kansas City better than they are right now. I know, I know – the future. Wil Myers was supposed to be part of the long term future. Well, so were Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas, and you know what? They haven’t been worth a crap yet well into their third years. There are no guarantees that Myers will be either. I care about the Royals have chances to wins games in 2013. Worry about 2016 in 2016.
As for me, I was sick and tired of games being over in four innings. This season, I have been emotionally invested in each game, and most of them, right until the end. It has been the pitching that has kept me involved. And James Shields has been the leader of that staff. Kansas City is better right now, which is what I care about, than they would be without him. The Royals have a better shot at making a run at a playoff spot with James Shields in the rotation than with Wil Myers in right field instead.
Five years from now, if Wil Myers is a perennial All-Star, and James Shields is on the long list of former Royals who didn’t make it to post season for Kansas City, then we can judge this trade. All of the data is not yet in. For now, can we just forget about Wil Myers and concentrate on the players who are on the present roster, or in the organization, now? Can we focus on who might be available via a trade that might help us in 2013? Can we look who might be available in our minors right now, who might be able to lend a hand on the big league club?
Wil Myers is gone, folks. Let’s get over it.