The World of Possibility

The World of Possibility
(Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)

The Kansas City Royals are a win away from the World Series.

Take a breath, collect your thoughts, and then ponder that with a clearer mind.  The Kansas City Royals are a win away from the World Series.

They were built on prospects, ultimately shrewd trades and signings, and a plan that general manager Dayton Moore stuck with despite a lot of criticism from all sides.  I mean, it wasn't a perfect plan, but you can't predict baseball...it's working.  The madness of Dayton Moore is working.  The bunts are working.  The Yosting is working.  Mike Moustakas and Eric Hosmer are working.

And all they had to do was get a chance to sneak into the postseason as the first wild card.

Imagine a similar situation with a team that we're familiar with, that is currently being built on prospects, ultimately shrewd trades and signings, and a plan that fans and media aren't too fond of...but the fruits of the labor are starting to bloom.  It's still not a perfect plan, with all the strikeouts and what not, but it's a slightly better funded plan than what Dayton Moore has to work with.

And all they have to do, starting in 2015, is to find a way to sneak into the postseason as the wild card.

It could happen.  And for the fans and players in Kansas City, it's happening right now.  Baseball is beautiful.

 

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  • Lots of models to follow to get to post-season, but one thing to reflect on with the Royals' model is how many years of marinating at the major league level their young core required. Not unlike the ups and downs with Castro and Rizzo, the Royals young core of Hosmer, Cain, Perez, and Moustakas' all required four seasons of playing together to get to this point within the Royals more limited payroll options.

    The Cubs think they can do it faster with the extra advantage of having a larger big market payroll to bring in a greater quantity of more expensive outside talent. This will allow them to not need to rely on an even faster maturation of their young players and use more outside veterans as those young players go through their inevitable growing pains.

    Another major difference with the Royals and the Cubs is KC's team speed and contact hitting. The Royals led the majors in stolen bases, and were last in offensive Ks. This the exact opposite of the current Cubs. But of course, there are many ways to the playoffs. But consistent will not expecting all the young players to be playoff ready in year one or two, but more likely year 3 or 4.

  • In reply to SkitSketchJeff:

    Good points! I think what I'm looking at is more of a macro scale, where you set up pitching and defense first to keep the team in as many games as possible for as long as possible. You hope for a lead, hope that the pitching doesn't give up the lead, then hand it over to the bullpen and defense to prevent late runs. That seems to be what the Royals are doing right now. It's not a perfect recipe, but you can envision a scenario where if this set of Cubs can sneak in via the wild card, they can emulate this particular "formula"...because the Royals aren't dominating so much as containing their opponent.

    Re: the growing pains, that's part of the idea of this offseason and the next, in hoping that older core pieces mature and take leadership roles to take pressure off the elite prospects. Can't put all your eggs in one basket, so to speak.

  • I was going to mention earlier today that all the radio scuttlebutt was "don't forget the 2004 Red Sox down 3-0." However, at about 6:00 p.m., the Royals took care of that.

    My pre-playoff picks are out; how are you doing?

  • In reply to jack:

    Well considering I was rooting for Oakland...

    The Giants are still alive though!

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