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Greinke Dominates, Awarded Cy Young

Since his arrival to the big leagues in 2004, both Zack Greinke and Royals fans have ridden a long and frustrating roller coaster filled with electric stuff and a fragile mind.
I think we can all take a step back and say it has been worth it.
We have seen this young man mature from a young sheepish head case, to a baby faced ace. When he first came on the scene it seemed that just the mention of the media or a ‘big game’ situation, and our young hurler was looking for a rock to climb under. Now, his quiet confidence demands that each time he steps on the mound it better be against the best in the league.
Greinke made his living the last two years making not just good hitters -- but great hitters -- look ridiculous. Looking back on the season, I cannot count how many times hitters took the walk of shame back to the dugout after watching one of Greinke’s over powering fastballs buzz the corner, or after swinging over the top of one of his knee breaking sliders in the dirt. He flat out dominated his opponent physically and mentally.
Greinke closed his case for the AL Cy Young with his 2.16 ERA, 242 strikeouts, and finally his six complete games and three shutout performances.
These numbers did not just come from out of the blue however. Early in his career, Greinke showed flashes of brilliance and made many fans, including myself wonder. What if? What if this kid could be the real deal? The next AL superstar? The only thing that was holding him back from super stardom was the team he was on.
He’s lucky as it is to have won it this year. In his last ten starts, he went 5-1, gave up one or fewer runs in seven of those starts and yet, he was forced to swallow a no decision in three of those. His 16-8 record was not the prettiest, but he did not benefit very often from his team’s lack of run support regularly during his starts.
The Royals flat out stink, but Greinke is a reason to hold on to any hope that a fan may still have. While Dayton Moore has already stated that the Royals look to build the team up through an aggressive pursuit of trades rather than free agency, the players we do show interest in on the market may be more enticed knowing they would be joining a team with the reigning Cy Young award winner.
These next few season will be crucial in that Greinke’s contract will be up and he will either be looking to cash in again with the Royals or test the open waters of free agency where he will most likely get swallowed up by the likes of the Anaheim Angels, Los Angeles Dodgers, or the market controllers; the Boston Redsox and the New York Yankees. If the Royals continue to play dismally, we could be punching our ticket to the cellar again in the near future, without Greinke on board.
Dayton, it’s in your hands. It’s time to find out if you’re serious about building a World Series contending team, or just a revolving door of missed opportunities. Here’s my advice; keeping Greinke around for as long as possible, will make that task a whole lot easier, and a lot more fun to watch.

Questions? Contact Tony Botts at s504451@nwmissouri.edu

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