The Royals have strung together their second six-game winning streak of the season to get back to .500. Unfortunately for them, the Tigers and Indians have been nearly as hot over the last week and the Royals still find themselves seven games off the lead. So while this has been an awesome climb back to average baseball, it hasn't really been a climb in the standings. While it isn't inconceivable to think the Royals could fight for a wild card or even a division title, it's highly, highly unlikely that they will.
Yes, this happened this year:
But so did this (and more recently):
Teams that spend 68 days under .500 rarely, if ever, make the playoffs.
I know I'm being a wet blanket (i.e. realistic), so let's move onto happier (i.e. less realistic) thoughts.
The Royals have the day off Monday, then get to play the Twins and Mets for the next six games. In fact, the Royals play the Twins nine times over the next month, and they also get a three game series with the Marlins, so there is a decent chance of them getting (and staying) over .500 for a while if they can beat the teams worse than them. They also have a decent chunk of games against the two teams ahead of them in the division; over the final two months of the season, the Royals have eleven games with the Tigers and six with the Indians, which could help them make up some ground.
So yeah, it's not inconceivable. A week ago Dayton Moore basically set (or reset?) the team's goal to .500. And now that that's more likely, he may go all in, trading for some offense and hoping the pitching & defense hold up. But this is the Royals, and as a fan who has watched nearly every game over the last 28 playoff-free years, I'll believe it when I see it. I still think they should begin preparing for 2014, but I would be elated if they could somehow succeed this year without ruining their chances the next couple of years.
Anywho, this is all just speculation (and ineffectual speculation at that), so it's ultimately pointless.
So why did I write it?
And why are you reading it?
You just came for the obligatory sweep post?
Sorry. You're right.
I'll get on with that.
Last August, the Royals swept the White Sox in Kansas City, and we posted this silly graphic:
But that makes the White Sox seem too cute, too lovable, too unworthy of our hatred.
And that's not right.
I don't like the White Sox. You don't like the White Sox. So what's with the adorable sock puppet?
We need a new White Sox sweep graphic, one worthy of the disdain we feel for the South Side.
And I think I've got just the thing:
Not good enough?
How about a close-up?
What an awful, ugly man.
That'll do nicely.
Go to Hell, William Ligue, Jr.! You're the Worst!