Oct 14, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas (8) dives into the stands to catch a foul ball hit by Baltimore Orioles center fielder Adam Jones (not pictured) during the sixth inning in game three of the 2014 ALCS playoff baseball game at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
The Kansas City Royals moved to within one win of reaching the World Series last night, knocking off the Baltimore Orioles, 2-1. As a Cincinnati Reds fan, there is no better team for me to root for when the Reds aren’t in it, than the Royals. In fact there are several reasons why pulling for the Royals is required this month, and here they are.
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The Royals ARE the Reds
Which small-market, non-coastal team rose from relative obscurity in the 1960s to dominate their division in the 1970s? And which one pulled off an unlikely World Series victory AFTER their heyday had already passed?
How about this: which team was led by a fiery infielder that helped turn his city into one of the best baseball towns in America?
Yeah, in many ways the Royals are the Reds, just powdered up in their blue uniforms and straddled with the DH.
The Royals Are Underdogs AND Favorites
There’s no way you can ever consider a team who squeaked into (and through) the Wild Card round as anything but underdogs, but the Royals are also on the brink of sweeping all the way to the World Series. They let you root for the good guy knowing there is a decent chance that they will actually win.
Charlie Brown is going to kick that football this time!
Kauffman Stadium Has a Waterfall
This seals it really, right? You might expect a waterfall in Toronto or Seattle, but in Kansas City? Built during the cookie-cutter age of baseball cathedrals, Kauffman has always been different, and it still is.
You Can’t Name 5 Royals
OK, maybe you know your KCs, but no, George Brett doesn’t count. Most people know about Alex Gordon and James Shields and Mike Moustakas (maybe), but the point is that this is largely an unknown group. If they’re going to win the World Series, we should take an interest in them, get to know them.
If the Royals Win, the Cardinals Lose
I’m counting on the San Francisco Giants to take care of business in the NLCS, but if they somehow falter, we need someone to take out the St. Louis Cardinals. The Royals are just the team to do that, especially since a clean victory would help set Don Denkinger free after all these years.
There are any number of reasons to root for the Kansas City Royals this fall, but these are five of the most compelling ones for Reds fans. It will be fascinating to see if this “team of destiny” can finish the job.