This isn’t goodbye … actually, it is: the departure of the Royals’ star players


All good things must come to an end.

I am writing this as a Royals fan who has seen the good, mostly the bad and the ugly in my lifetime, but Sunday will mark the end of an era in Kansas City.

The core of the Royals team that played a major part in back-to-back World Series appearances and one championship will be playing their final games as Royals at Kauffman Stadium on Sunday.

You already know, but Eric Hosmer, Lorenzo Cain, Mike Moustakas, Jason Vargas and Alcides Escobar all will be free agents after this season.

The thought of the Royals being able to keep one, maybe two, of these guys is realistic. Hosmer, Cain and Moustakas are the players most likely to leave Kansas City; these guys had pretty good seasons after all. They will be demanding some money that, chances are, Kansas City just cannot afford.

Some fans may ask, “Where is the loyalty?” but these guys have a short time to make their money, and they deserve it. It is not really a question of if, but when during the offseason will they find another team to play for.

The hardest part of all of this is will potentially be watching Hosmer and Moustakas, who grew up in the Royals’ minor league system, leave and not see them wearing the white and blue next season.

These guys changed the culture in Kansas City, a place that started to expect postseason baseball after not being asked to the dance for nearly 30 years.

I will never forget those two seasons of October baseball and the joy it brought to my life. I was able to go to the 2015 American League Division Series against Los Angeles and see a Royal celebration after sweeping the Angels.

I will finish off the column with this: please, Royals fans, don’t burn any of these guys’ jerseys when they leave — they brought Kansas City memories we could only dream about.

I will be going to the game against the Diamondbacks on Friday strictly to see this group to play together one more time. I probably won’t cry … maybe I will, but I could see some of these players who will face big-money contracts get a bit emotional on Sunday.

Thanks for the memories Hoz, Moose, Lo Cain, Vargy and Esky. I am already looking forward to your Royals Hall of Fame inductions.