"I sought among them for a man that might set up a hedge, and stand in the gap before me in favor of the land." Ezekiel 22:30

Monday, October 20, 2014

An Open Letter to My Fellow Royals Fans... From a Cardinals Fan

Those of you who know me well know that I am unquestionably a St. Louis Cardinals fan. But the Royals have always been my #2 baseball team. As a Cardinals fan, I don't think I'm alone in saying that. Yes, there's a certain generation of Cardinals fan who won't let 1985 go. Yet, the simple fact is that I wasn't even a thought in 1985. Heck, my parents weren't even married in October 1985 when the I-70 Series took place. Plus, since that 1985 Series the Cardinals have won five National League pennants and won two World Series. So there's really no reason for us re-hash ancient history.

Now I may not be a good Royals fan because I can't name most of their roster this year, last year, or the year before, but I can tell you Moustakas, Gordon, Shields, and Escobar are some of their best players right now. I can't tell you what their record was in any year before 2014, but I can tell you they won 89 games this year. Unlike a lot of Cardinals fans, I grew up in the middle of Missouri and spent nearly five years of my life in Kansas City, so maybe that's why I have a soft spot in my heart for the Royals. I'd like to think it gives me a better perspective.

The relationship between the Royals and Cardinals is an interesting one. The best way I can describe the way Cardinals fans feel about the Kansas City Royals to compare it to how two brothers feel about each other. The Cardinals are the older brother who wins all the awards and gets all the notoriety. The Royals are the younger brother, the new kid on the block. They struggle to do things right and just can never quite be as good as their older brother. But by golly, they stuck it to their older brother that one time!

The Cardinals won't admit it, but they like their younger brother. They make fun of him, call him names, and want to beat him every time they play against each other. But no one roots harder for their younger brother than the older, more successful brother (just as long as they're not playing against each other). We Cardinals fans really do want to see the Royals do well... and it's probably a good thing this isn't another I-70 Series.

That being said, to all you Royals fans who are Royals fans first, enjoy this World Series and don't get greedy. This has been a remarkable postseason run. If you're honest with yourselves, you know this has already been far beyond anything you could have ever expected. You could get swept and this season would have been an unmitigated success. Of course winning would make it all that much sweeter, but don't base your happiness on that outcome. You've exorcised the demons. You've put an end to a generation of sports misery. You've put Kansas City on the professional sports map. Now, just enjoy it. I've been lucky enough to see the Cardinals in four World Series in my lifetime and win it all twice. Cardinals fans have been spoiled. But we've enjoyed each one like it might be the last one, because you never know if it will be.

I say all this merely to say that although I'm a Cardinals fan first, I'm a Royals fan second, and I'll be pulling for them in this World Series. If you're a Missourian and you haven't been pulling for the Royals this entire postseason, you might as well just leave. We don't need that kind of negativity here. So, Royals nation, Cardinals nation is behind you. We hope you trounce those Giants. Go bring home the crown.

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