While listening to the guys on 610 Sports today, I was reminded of a disturbing trend: the Kansas City Royals have a losing record at home this season, despite being a team built around the idea of taking advantage of their home field. This needs to change quickly for KC to stay in the hunt for a playoff seed, as is made evident by the success at home for several of the Royals’ biggest rivals.
The Los Angeles Angels, current leaders in the AL Wild Card race, are 26-14 at home this season. Every single one of KC’s divisional rivals is at .500 or above on their home turf this year, but the Royals remain a game below at 21-22. The Royals should be a team that plays to the strengths of its own park, as it was built to do, but the numbers show that this just isn’t happening yet in 2014.
All KC starters not named Jeremy Guthrie have better numbers on the road, allowing higher batting averages, bigger power numbers and higher ERA’s at the K. The Royals’ team batting average is third in MLB on the road but 18th at home. KC’s slugging percentage is .365 at home and .381 in away games through the first half of the season.
This sad pattern has everything to do with mentality. Nobody thinks these guys want to fail in front of the home crowd. The guys on 610 Sports rightfully pointed out the sentiment of pressure applied by a desperate fan-base and a franchise-defining season. To make a legit run at the postseason this year, youngsters in KC need to shake off the stress of success and give fans at the K something to cheer about at a much more regular rate.
Help them out by grabbing Royals tickets from ScoreBig and cheer on Kansas City as its attempts to make the 2014 postseason!