Kansas City Royals: It’s ok for Royals fans to cheer Cain’s homerun

KANSAS CITY, MO - APRIL 24: Former Kansas City Royals player Lorenzo Cain
KANSAS CITY, MO - APRIL 24: Former Kansas City Royals player Lorenzo Cain /

Lorenzo Cain punctuated his return to Kansas City with a home run that brought a cheer from the Kauffman Stadium crowd that rubbed some people the wrong way.

Some people may not like this, but the game at the K Wednesday night was more about the homecoming Lorenzo Cain than about the Kansas City Royals. Cain is a hero to KC and one of the most popular players in Royals history and fans wanted him to know it. I would feel confident in guessing that at least 80% of the fans who were in attendance went there specifically to welcome Cain back home.

The huge ovation he got the first time he took the field was just as loud and long as everyone expected. He got a big hug from Salvador Perez and tipped his cap to the crowd twice as the ovation continued even after the first pitch. That at-bat ended with a groundout to end the inning which saw Cain get another large cheer as he ran off the field.

More from Kansas City Royals

The Milwaukee Brewers were impressed with the response Cain received, and it was even featured on MLB Network following the game. This is not the first time the fan base has been praised for their reactions to not only Royals but opposing players. When Miguel Cabrera locked up his triple crown season at the K in 2012 he received a standing ovation that.

The Royals fanbase is one of the most loyal and loving in the country. Going back to the All-Star game with the #BooCano campaign that worked to perfection. Then there was 2015 All-Star game in which the fans highjacked the entire game by electing seven Royals onto the starting roster. The #VoteOmar campaign was one of most entertaining things I’ve seen on social media.

Sure the All-Star game voting and the #BooCano campaign upset other fan bases, but it was respected by other teams and players. Players around major league baseball know that while it started out as just another team slogan, the #ForeverRoyal saying means something to KC.

So when Cain walked up to the plate in the seventh inning of a 4-2 game, leaned back and hit a bomb over the right-field fence, it wasn’t a surprise the fans cheered. At the time it happened I didn’t think too much about it, Cain was laughing and joking with guys as he jogged the bases and even said something in the direction of the Royals dugout after touching home plate. It seemed like it was all in fun.

Then I woke up this morning and realized that some people disapproved of the fans reaction. Jay Binkley from 610 Sports Radio in KC was vocal during his 10:00 am-2: 00 pm show that you should never cheer for an opposing teams player who just hurt your team. Joel Goldberg and Jeff Montgomery on the Royals postgame show agreed with him saying it was slightly disrespectful to the current players.

I 100% see where they are coming from and understand why they have that opinion. Binkley used the example of Jamaal Charles returning to Arrowhead last season and the fan reaction he got. He was cheered during introduction but nobody would have cheered had he ran 80 yards for a touchdown and he’s 100% right when he says this.

The difference is in the teams and the way the teams treat their players and fan bases. The Royals want their fans to feel like family, the Chiefs want their fans to feel like fans. This was no more evident than on Binkley’s own 610 sports station today. Ned Yost came on and spent 15 minutes talking about Cain, the good times and the feelings they get from the fans. Meanwhile, the Chiefs forced Spencer Ware to cancel an interview.

I’ve written articles about this in the past and it is just as true today as it was when I wrote those, the Chiefs take their fans for granted. The Royals treat us like family and you will always love and cheer for your family, especially when it’s the reason you were there.

Next: Royals All-Time Triples Leaders

This Royals team is bad and it will be bad all season, and that’s ok. We all knew this was a rebuilding year and it was going to be a lot of bad baseball, so it’s no surprise. Despite the game being 4-2, not a blow out by any means, only the most delusional fan believed they would win that game.

He didn’t hit the ball off Kelvin Herrera or Danny Duffy, he hit it off Burch Smith, a player most of us couldn’t pick out of a lineup. The bullpen isn’t in the middle of a great scoreless inning steak that he snapped, they have a group ERA over seven. The game was lost, he hit it off a nobody, and it was a night the fans came specifically to cheer him. To not expect them to cheer a Cain home run is not understanding the full situation both in this city and on that night.