The last time the Kansas City Royals were in the playoffs, I was barely more than 3 months old. If you want to put it in days, I was exactly 100 days old when the Royals claimed Game 7 of the 1985 World Series against the Cardinals.
If you're reading this, you're well aware of the Royals postseason track record since October 27, 1985. It's nonexistent. But in less than an hour, the Royals will play host to the Oakland Athletics in the Wild Card Playoff Game at Kauffman Stadium and the story lines are endless.
It's Kansas City's former team against Kansas City's current team. It's "Moneyball" against "The Process." It's the team that limped (literally, in Josh Donaldson's case) into the playoffs against the fastest team in baseball. It's the pitcher traded to Oakland out of nowhere in July against the pitcher traded to Kansas City almost two years ago -- both of whom acquired with a game like tonight's in mind. And there are more where those came from.
Yet, none of those story lines truly matter. What matters is this moment may not come around Kansas City for another 29 years. So enjoy it.
I composed two tweets after Friday's playoff-clinching victory that basically boiled down to: "Don't let this be the highlight of the season." I meant what I wrote, but it was also selfish of me.
I'm lucky to be streaming pregame coverage of a Royals PLAYOFF GAME right now. Since October of 1985, the Royals have played countless games that were utterly insignificant. But the next nine innings will all matter.
And as badly as I want the Royals to get the best of Jon Lester tonight to advance to the ALDS, more importantly I want to enjoy the next four hours.
What happens during the next four hours will ultimately decide how I will feel at the end of the night, but one way or another I'm going to savor this experience. The Royals are in the postseason again. They're part of the playoff landscape. Whether or not they advance, they'll have a say in who wins the World Series. It's a moment I'm not fully prepared for, but it's one I'm thankful for. I hope you are too. Enjoy this.