The Kansas City Royals finished the year with a dreadful 59 ~ 103 record. It's difficult to accept so many losses when there's Whit Merrifield having more hits than anyone else in the Major leagues (206) for the second year in a row. And Jorge Soler smashing the Royals home run record by TEN with 48. There were THREE Royals players that finished the year with 10 triples. The last time that happened in the American League was FORTY years ago, by the Kansas City Royals, in 1979. The Houston Astros (then in the NL) did it in 1984. Adalberto Mondesi finished the year three stolen bases behind the leader at 43. Pardon the pun, but if he had been stayed healthy, he would have ran away with the stolen base title.
This years' team showed flashes of the Royals of the Championship years by coming from behind, in the second half of this season. It was just too little, too late. The last game of their season was a great example. With Soler possibly coming up as the fourth batter in the bottom of the ninth and the game tied, it would have been awesome to see him smash his second home run of the day, but this time with the bases loaded. But that's not really the Royals style. Instead, Humberto Ateaga, batting only .190, hits a double. Light hitting Nik Dini (batting .182) doinks a single into center field, with Arteaga stopping at third. And Brett Phillips, with his meager .138 average, hits a long sacrifice fly ball to right and the runner scores for a walk off Royals victory to send manager Ned Yost into retirement.
Yost was a great manager, being with the club more than any other royals skipper, for 10 years. He has by far, more wins (746) than any other Royals manager. Before he took the team to an 86-76 finish in 2013, the Royals had only one winning season since 1994. He won two American League Championships, something no other Royals manager has done. Plus, the World Series in 2015. He also has the best all-time winning percentage in post season history of .710 with a minimum of 20 games, including a record 8 post season wins in a row.
It would be awesome to see the same core of players return for next year. But with a new owner and coaching staff, there could be growing pains, as well as an entirely new coaching philosophy that may take time for the players to get use tothat could cost some wins. There is room for improvement, but the biggest problem is that the pitching, especially the bullpen, just plain sucked.