I don’t quite have the final installment in my ‘Making the Leap’ series done and frankly, am flat out lazy today (or really, really busy – if my partners happen to be reading this!). Long ago, back in the dark days of 2005, I started writing a blog about the Royals: a massive media juggernaut called the Royals Op-Ed Page that,at times, would reach into triple digits in daily hits.
For fun, I took a look back at one of the early posts and found this chilling post entitled ‘The Future Should Be Now”, that read as follows:
Like virtually everyone else in Royalland, I was excited to hear the Chris Truby will not be ready for opening day (sorry Chris, nothing personal). As Mark Teahen has hit and hit some more through spring training, I felt more and more compelled that HE should be at 3rd base from day one and now it appears that, like it or not, the Royals will be doing just that.
The only factor that cause disappointment to KC fans would be if management is so focused on delaying arbitration for a year that they keep Teahen in the minors for just long enough this season to do just that. Perhaps that may be a saavy financial move, but in doing so it would prove to all that from day one this season the Royals have no intent to contend. This could quite conceivably by a massive public relations faux paus. Let’s hope, and for now assume, that our starting 3rd base is and will be Mark Teahen.
I say this particulary given the fact that NO ONE seems to want to win the first base/dh battle. Ken Harvey, in addition to being thrown out of the game this afternoon, managed to strike out twice more. The people’s choice, Calvin Pickering, has so far faired little better. Given that fact, no matter which one goes north with the team, we will need every ounce of offense we can muster.
In addition to Teahen’s bat at 3rd, that means we should also get the inevitable over with and install Ruben Gotay at 2nd. He is probably not as good a hitter as he has been the first few weeks of spring, but let’s remember he was not horrendous at the plate last season. I find it hard to believe, and have seen no evidence thereof, that Gotay’s defense is so lacking that we can’t have his potential .290 average with 10 homers in the lineup.
The Royals already have stair-stepped their future salary situation nicely: Hernandez, Berroa & Harvey (I know, I said Harvey) in one year; DeJesus and Greinke in another; Buck, Gotay and Teahen (assuming they let them come up) in the next. The future is now, in this writer’s opinion: let’s bring these guys up, get them seasoned, and be prepared to seriously contend in 2006.
While the young players of today certainly hold mountains of promise more than those discussed back in 2005, it is wise to remember that potential is nothing until it turns into performance. I’ll take my chances with Eric Hosmer over Ken Harvey, however.