Kansas City Royals: The complicated legacy of David Glass

Kansas City Royals owner David Glass and Julian Irene Kauffman throw out the first pitches before Thursday's baseball game against the Chicago White Sox, on March 29, 2018, at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Mo. (John Sleezer/Kansas City Star/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
Kansas City Royals owner David Glass and Julian Irene Kauffman throw out the first pitches before Thursday's baseball game against the Chicago White Sox, on March 29, 2018, at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Mo. (John Sleezer/Kansas City Star/Tribune News Service via Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)
(Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images) /

One last gasp before the Kansas City Royals descent

Although Cueto and Zobrist departed in free agency, the Kansas City Royals still intended to contend in 2016. David Glass had opened his checkbook, as Ventura and Duffy had signed long term extensions, and Ian Kenndy was brought in to fill out the rotation. The hope was that the young duo would be able to tap into their potential to be top of the rotation starters, while the focus on defense and contact would work once again.

Unfortunately, the Royals were snakebitten. Mike Moustakas and Alex Gordon collided while tracking a popup at the end of May, costing Moustakas the rest of the season and Gordon a month. The Royals offense just could not produce enough, and the pitching staff took a step back. Edinson Volquez and Chris Young were pummeled with the regression hammer, and the second coming of Joakim Soria was a disaster.

Despite those injuries and general ineffectiveness, the Royals were still able to finish with a .500 record. If they could stay healthy, and rotation could take a step forward, the Royals could have contended in 2017. Instead, tragedy struck before the season, as Ventura was killed in a single car accident in the Dominican Republic on January 22, 2017.

His passing took the wind out of the Royals sails. Jason Hammel was signed to fill his void in the rotation, but the Royals were not the same. In what was to be their last gasp before free agency closed the playoff window, Kansas City just did not have that same passion. Hammel was a disaster, and the Kansas City Royals finished with an 80-82 record. With a large portion of the core heading to free agency, the playoff window was closed.