How can you not be romantic about baseball?” – Brad Pitt, as Oakland A’s general manager Billy Beane, in Moneyball
It’s time to rekindle that old flame. Baseball is coming back.
As the 2017 season approaches, Missourians find themselves fortunate to have two big league teams (not to mention minor league and semi-pro teams) for which to cheer.
The Royals start the 2017 campaign with several road games before welcoming the Oakland Athletics to Kauffman Stadium for the home opener on April 10. First pitch is set for 3:15 p.m.
Sadly, the Royals are dealing with the tragic loss of Yordano Ventura, a talented and popular pitcher who died at age 25 in a January car wreck. The home opener will surely be an emotional day at Kauffman Stadium.
After finishing at 81-81 in 2016, the Royals added punch to their lineup in the form of Brandon Moss, who belted 28 home runs as a Cardinal in 2016, and Jorge Soler, who played in 86 games last year and hit 12 home runs as a Cub. If he stays healthy, the Royals expect both of those numbers to increase dramatically.
If you have time before or after a game in Kansas City – whether it’s the home opener or later in the season – be sure to visit attractions like the National World I Museum and Memorial, Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, Kansas City Zoo and Arabia Steamboat Museum while you’re in town.
The Cardinals kick off the new season in dramatic style, hosting their arch rivals (and defending World Series champions), the Chicago Cubs, for a three-game set. The home opener is April 2, with a first pitch set for 7:35 p.m.
If you’ve never been to Busch Stadium for a home-opener, this will be the year you want to fix that. Cardinals-Cubs games are never short on intensity and this series promises to have a little extra fire, thanks to the Cubs status as defending champions.
The Cards finished 10 games over the .500 mark last year and didn’t make a lot of moves in the offseason. They did acquire Dexter Fowler, a former Cub, in an effort to improve their outfield defense and add some speed to the lineup.
Oh, and in case you’re wondering, the Royals and Cardinals face each other in the I-70 series from Aug. 7-10. Games on Aug. 7-8 are at Kauffman, the games on Aug. 9-10 are played at Busch.
Enjoy the season!