Friday, June 18, 2010

Bashing of KC, internally and externally, makes me sick

So after the news was confirmed that Kansas City will indeed host the 2012 MLB All Star Game, most people in Kansas City rejoiced. Then we started reading what people were saying about us. It hurts to see people bash a city. But then again, most of these people are probably east coasters and have probably never been to Kansas City in the last 5 years. Then I started reading the reaction from locals, some saying that KC will be exposed as a fraudulent major league town. The best way I can compare it is like a good looking girl suddenly panicking and thinking that she looks awful in her prom dress and won't leave her room...two months before prom.

I'll admit it, KC was a pretty boring place 5 years ago. We had just lost the Big 12 tournament and Westport had been taken over by hooligans and criminals. Most of the city's metro population lived in Kansas and suburbs. It was a boring place unless you were searching for some damn good barbeque and had an affinity for outdoor shopping.

But the city is on its way back. 50,000 people have moved back in to the city limits, 5,000 to downtown alone. $4.5 billion dollars have been invested in downtown since the late 90s. The Power and Light district is the social center of the city, the Kauffman Center for Performing Arts will be a premiere theatre on the national stage, the Crossroads District is still one of this city's best kept secrets, Union Station has been a bust, but it still brings in some pretty awesome national exhibits.

Most people's view of Kansas City is very dated. This isn't the KC of the 1990s, where the main attraction in town was the world's largest collection of Starter jackets ( still might be). There are plenty of things for people to do in this town now. All within a short taxi or bus ride from downtown are the River Market, Westport, the Plaza, Power & Light, Crown Center, Negro Leagues Museum, and the 18th and Vine Jazz district.

The point is, people have become so disconnected with Kansas City. People say they're from KC, but in all likelihood they're from Lee's Summit, Blue Springs, Overland Park or Parkville and haven't seen the revitalization from up close. I've seen it. I worked at Power & Light for nearly a year. Every night, people from KC or even out of town, would come up to me and say how they couldn't believe an area like this could be in Kansas City. The people of KC need to stop badmouthing our city. She's back on the rise. I think we're going to blow people away.

Maybe we're suffering from ugly duckling syndrome, or it could be the other thing that has plagued this city for the last 20 years...loser mentality. Get behind your city and for crying out loud, stop it with the loser mentality.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

What should be done with David DeJesus?

With the trade deadline rapidly approaching, the Royals are reportedly ready to wheel and deal some of their veteran players. Scott Podsednik, Rick Ankiel, Jose Guillen and Kyle Farnsworth's names have all been linked to potential trades. Also in that mix of names was David DeJesus, probably the most prized piece on the Royals roster. The return on DeJesus would be ok. He isn't a big name player and doesn't have the "sexy" power or speed that would net the Royals a blockbuster set of prospects.

That isn't a knock on DeJesus, its a knock on how under appreciated players like DeJesus are in baseball.

He'll be affordable. We know this. All of his important skills probably won't significantly decline in the next 5 years. His speed and power may decrease, but here's the beauty of this: DeJesus isn't known for either of those things.

He's currently batting .324/.399/.482/.881. Pretty awesome numbers. His OPS+ currently stands at 139, a career high.

Those are the facts. Now here's why we should keep him.

Yes his value is high right now. But the return will not be substantial enough. I say this because the Royals system is extremely shallow in the outfield. Derrick Robinson, David Lough and Jordan Parraz seem to be close to the big leagues, but having a veteran (and overall nice guy) like DeJesus to welcome them to the bigs would net much more value than 2-3 C+ prospects. Um, not to mention DeJesus has been the most consistent offensive performer on the Royals in the last 7 years.

I'm not saying DDJ should be a Royals lifer, but he definitely deserves to spend a few more seasons with the Royals. I'm not trying to be a Royals "sunshine pumper", but trading DeJesus just doesn't make that much sense. That is, unless he is designated as a Type A free agent, in which case the Royals would be compensated with draft picks.

Re-sign him to a three year deal. He just started a family here and might be willing to give the Royals the good ol' home town discount.

He's not just a good player, but he's a good guy and definitely deserves to stick around and be a part of (hopefully) a new generation of Royals winners.