What the 2015 Kansas City Royals Can Teach Us about Life
Since I am from Central Missouri, I grew up as a fan of both baseball Missouri teams, the St. Louis Cardinals and the Kansas City Royals. I grew up growing to both stadiums and seeing both teams. Since I have left Missouri, over a decade ago, I have still maintained my affinity to those teams. So you can imagine my elation when I watched the Royals defeat the Mets to win the World Series.
What is even more exciting than celebrating the Royals victory is to take note of the life lessons we can learn from the team in persistence and endurance. They provided a great lesson in never giving up, no matter how bleak the circumstances appear. The team set a record in having seven victories in the post season, where they came from behind by being at least two runs behind in the seventh inning or later.
This started in the American League Division Series with Houston. The Astros held a 6-2 lead at the end of the 7th when the governor of Texas tweeted congratulations for the Astros for advancing to the next round of the playoffs. The Royals scored 7 runs in the 8th and 9th on their way to winning the series. I watched it continue in the first game of the World Series, when the scrappy Royals tied the game in the bottom of the 9th on their way to win the game in the 14th inning.
Last Sunday evening, I witnessed the Royals come through again. In this case they were behind by two runs going into the 9th. They then scored two runs using only one hit and then scored another 5 in the 12th to win the series. The team never gave up, no matter how bleak the outcome appeared at the time. They lived the mantra spoken by Winston Churchill during WWII as to “Never, never, never, never, never give up!”
What seemed more amazing to me is that the Royals just expected to win the game no matter how far down they were late in the game. You could see a quiet confidence that they realized that someone(s)—a starter, bench player, or a pitcher from the bullpen—would pull through and contribute the runs or stop the other team and win the game. In the last game the go-ahead run was driven in by a Royal who had not had an at-bat in the series up to that point!
The next attribute the Royals had was an excited expectation as to what they would experience after winning the game. Even if they were behind late in the game, you would see the Royals in the dugout, get up and begin acting like a little league baseball team in their excitement. They started jumping up and down, waving towels, and shouting as they encouraged the rest of their teammates as they began their way toward victory.
So the lessons here are to first never, ever, give up when things get tough. Then have a quiet expectation that you will win in the end and create an expectation to win!