The Merry Month of May
As the Royals wrapped up their successful trip to Chicago and Texas, the road record improved to 11-7. The good times started with a 3-3 trip to LA and Oakland to start the year, then a 4-3 trek through Cleveland, Minnesota and Detroit (including defeating the Tigers with Verlander starting to conclude that 9-day excursion) and then came the White Sox and Rangers. It went very well. And the New York trip started well, with a win that raised the road record to 12-7. Now we gotta work on getting more wins at home sweet home…
My hotel room in New York was so high-up, the people looked like ants. (Bringing to mind the old joke in which two people are waiting for their plane to take off. One guy says “Wow, we’re way up there, the people look like ants.” The other guy says “those ARE ants, we haven’t taken off yet!” But I digress. A rainy first day of the road trip finished with an impressive 6-0 win over the Yankees. If you can make out the fine detail in this photo, you’re seeing lots of umbrellas.
Danny Duffy’s season is over. Tommy John surgery ending his year in May. As sad as we are for Danny, he couldn’t be more upbeat. He knows the success rate of this now-common ligament-transplant procedure. He told me his goal is to be back pitching for the Royals next June. Before heading to California for his operation, he signed authographs for fans at Kauffman Stadium.
This is my friend Gary Cantwell, who I’ve known since my freshman year in college. He was the program director of KSMU, the campus radio station at my alma mater, Southern Methodist University in Dallas. As I showed him around Kauffman Stadium he freely admitted to people that HE was the one who gave me my start in radio. Let’s just say he didn’t receive many “thank you’s!” Of course when I was at SMU, our football team was making more in salary than the Dallas Cowboys, with whom we shared Texas Stadium at the time. Alas, there was no money left over to pay those of us who worked at KSMU.
The week before we went to Arlington, Texas, Josh Hamilton had the best week anyone can remember a ballplayer having. It included a 4-homer game. He hit 9 home runs, drove in 18, and hit 467. The night before we arrived, the bat he used broke in a game against the Angels. Before the bat was shipped to Cooperstown, Ranger fans had the chance to get their photo taken with the bat that “died a hero.”
Our hotel in Texas is connected to the golf course where the Byron Nelson Championship Classic is played. It’s a regular stop on the PGA Tour. Jason Dufner was the 2012 winner. The namesake of the tournament was one of the greatest of all time. In 1945 he won an amazing 11 consecutive tour events, and 18 tournaments that year. Overall he won 52 tour events and 5 majors.
I did not golf during our two-day stay in the Lone Star state, but I did check out the pool. After so many cooooold days on the road throughout April (and even May), it was nice to soak up a little warmth.
The Royals took 2 of 3 in Chicago, a city that is certainly somewhere on everyones’ list of their favorite road cities. This is the Trump International Hotel and Tower aka the Trump Tower. It was completed in 2009. You see it here right on the Chicago River. It houses condos as well as a hotel. Restaurants and retail space are also part of what is now the 11th tallest building in the world. It’s taller than the John Hancock Building, but does not stretch as high as Willis Tower (formerly known as Sears Tower). I took this shot on the team bus as it was taking us to US Cellular Field.