Thursday, March 27, 2008

Former Kansas City Royal of the Week!

Today, I am starting something new. Every Thursday, I am going to post my "Former Kansas City Royal of the Week". I am a huge Kansas City Royal fan. When I was growing up in Wyandotte County, the Royals were awesome. We won the World Series in 1985. We had Bo Jackson. We fought Billy Martin about pine tar. We rocked.

Since then, we have sucked. I would love to blame a free agency market that steals great players from small market teams. I would love to blame the Players Union for their "player-first" attitude (not team-first, as it should be in sports). I would love to blame KC Royal management for not having enough money to keep our stars. I would love to blame Johnny Damon, Jermaine Dye, Carlos Beltran or any number of other former Royals who left our organization in pursuit of money.

But I can not blame any of them. I have to blame Jorge Orta.

Jorge Orta is a former Kansas City Royal. As a Kansas City Royal, Orta was involved in one of the most controversial plays in baseball history. In the 1985 World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals, his team trailing 3 games to 2 in the Series and 1-0 in the game, Orta led off the bottom of the ninth with a ground ball. Umpire Don Denkinger called Orta safe; television replays later showed that the Cardinal pitcher had beaten him to the base. He should have been called out. The call shifted momentum of the Series to the Royals, who won the game 2-1, and the Series the next night on Bret Saberhagen's 11-0 shutout.

I was at game 6 of the 1985 World Series with my sister, Jen. It was a defining sports moment in my life.

I believe in balance in baseball. The "safe" call by Jorge Orta was such a stroke of good luck, that according to the Laws of Karma, only bad things have happened since then. It has been 23 years since the Kansas City Royals last won a World Series. I think it has been almost that long since they made the playoffs.

It is time to change this bad luck. And I am going to change it by bringing back former Kansas City Royals players in this blog. I hope the spirit of these former Royals carries over to the current players. Every Thursday, from now until the Kansas City Royals win the World Series (or they move to another city... please, God, never), I am going to post a picture of a former Kansas City Royal.

Please help me welcome the first Kansas City Royal of the Week: Jorge Orta.


Chairman of the Beer Drinking Convention said...
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Ben said...

Amen to that. There were some good rookie cards in 1987... if I remember correctly, Mark McGwire was that year. Maybe that was '88, I can not remember. I think it was the US Olympic team.