Bradford Doolittle of DoolittleBrothers.com-fame is a Royals fan. Not as optimistic as some, but a fan nonetheless, which is among the reasons Deadspin asked him to write a Royals season "preview." Apologies for the delay, but I bring it to you now.
The whole thing reminds me of a scene from Two for the Money...
George Brett: "I don't know how to say this without sounding rude, but you're a lemon, B.D. -- can I call you B.D.? Like a bad car, there is something inherently defective in you."
Doolittle wrinkles his brows as Brett continues:
"And you. And you. And me. And all of us in this room. We're all lemons. We look like everybody else, but what makes us different is our defect."
Roomful of Royals commentators look at each other, confused.
Brett: "You see, most baseball fans, when they go watch baseball, they expect their team to win. When we go, we expect to lose, subconsciously. Me, I never feel better or more alive than when the opponent's on the field in their handshake/butt-slap line, and everybody here knows what I'm talking about."
Some nod in agreement while others lean back in their chairs in defiant slouches.
"Hell, even when we win, it's just a matter of time before we give it all back. But when we lose, now there's another story. Now when we lose -- and I'm talking about the kind of loss that makes your asshole pucker up to the size of a decimal point -- you know what I mean? You've just recreated the worst possible nightmare this side of malignant cancer for the 20th goddamn time, and you're standing there and you suddenly realize: 'Hey, I'm still here. I'm still breathing. I'm still alive.' Us lemons, we fuck shit up all the time on purpose, because we constantly need to remind ourselves we're alive."
The room isn't sure what to think. A particularly cynical man squints his eyes as he begins to recognize the man speaking.
Brett: "Bradford, the Royals aren't your problem. It's this fucked up need to feel something. To convince yourself that you exist. That's your problem."
Finally, the man realizes who's been talking. "Hey, you're George Brett. You used to play for the Royals!"
Murmurs are passed around the room as people stir in their seats and lean forward. Brett doesn't seem to acknowledge the man as he goes around passing out baseball cards and ticket stubs from the 1985 World Series.
"Royals tickets on sale now," he says, and before anyone can make a coherent rebuttal, he's grabbed his understudy, Alex Gordon, and the two are hightailing it out the door, leaving a roomful of journalists with stunned looks on their faces.
Doolittle looks on with a sort of awe, then glances down at the card in his hand. It's a 1975 Topps George Brett rookie card, signed. He turns it around and finds a neat, hand-scrawled message: "When we are strong to take trouble, we prove that we believe. When we prove that we believe, we have hope. We will not be disappointed by this hope." Bradford raises his eyes and smiles.