Results tagged ‘ Kauffman Stadium ’

Riding along on a carousel

One of the major family features at the renovated Kauffman Stadium is an expanded kids’ area. This area will include a Royals-themed carousel. The carousel will feature 15 figures, including large baseball bats, a glove, and Sluggerrr. Here’s a sneak peek at some of the carousel figures that are currently being carved by hand.

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Renovations: The Outfield

Today we bring you more photos of the renovations at Kauffman Stadium, with a focus on the outfield experience. In 2009, you can take in a Royals game from a new view. You’ll have more chances to catch a home run and on a summer day, the mist from the fountains will keep you cool.



HallofFame2.jpgIn left field, the Royals Hall of Fame is taking shape. This area will also house five group suites that can host gatherings of 20 to 150 people. Outfield Box sections 104, 105, and 106 will be between the visitor’s bullpen and the Hall of Fame building. Check out those sections on the 2009 seating chart.




LeftFieldFountains.jpgAs we move to left center field, you can see that the Tri-Vision signs are getting a new look. Outfield Box sections 101, 102, and 103 will be in front of the left field fountains. The new seating that surrounds the old Jumbotron platform will be Fountain Pavilion seating (sections 201, 202, and 203). Tickets in the Fountain Pavilion are just $7 for non-premium games. These tickets will be available only on the day of the game, so get to the stadium early!




Here’s a closer look at center field, where the outfield wall has been removed. Construction crews are doing heavy dirt work in this area.





RightField.jpgThe right field area will feature a restaurant with a great view of the field.

Now you’ve seen a few of the new amenities in the outfield. Wet conditions prevented us from taking a close-up tour of the Outfield Plaza, the area beyond the new buildings and CrownVision. Look for a photo posting later in the offseason on the these features.


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Renovations: View Level

Today ATH took a tour of Kauffman Stadium. It was rainy when we arrived but the construction crews were still hard at work (the sun came out just in time). We hope to bring you pictures throughout the offseason.  Today we will start with a tour of some of the new features on View Level.

Stadium 10.17 013.jpgFirst, we want to show you a view from outside of the stadium. You are looking north, with the first base spiral on the right. The new building with the glass will house the ticket office and team store on street level. The next two levels are administrative offices. The roof of the building will have a food court for the View Level (below left).


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On the right are the new escalators you’ll use to access the View Level and the food court.

Here’s a look toward the stadium. As you can see, this level now features more space for amenities and foot traffic.

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Stadium 10.17 062.jpgNow that you’ve seen your first stop, the food court, we want to show you to your seats. We’re installing new steps in the View Level aisles to make your experience more comfortable.





Our final picture is out toward the field. You can see why we call it View Level! Be sure to check back next week as we bring you more pictures of the Kauffman Stadium renovations!

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Renovations Update, Arizona Fall League Blog

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Drivers on I-70 get a glimpse of the changes at Kauffman Stadium, which has been abuzz with activity since the Royals closed out the home slate on September 21st. If you want a better view, you’ve come to the right place. On Friday, ATH will take a behind the scenes tour of Kauffman Stadium. Look for an afternoon post, the first in a series of photo updates of the renovations as we count down to the home opener, 177 days from today. If you can’t wait until Friday, check out the renovations webcams. You can control the views, both inside and outside of the stadium.

Also, be sure to check out one of our fellow blogs on Last week we told you about the Kansas City prospects participating in the Arizona Fall League. Now, those players are posting on their own blog, Royals in the AFL. Outfielders Joe Dickerson and Brian McFall have shared their initial experiences. Look for more posts from the group of prospects.

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Touch 'em All: Victor Rojas on growing up at the K, calling the game he loves and riding in wood-paneled station wagons.

10-3 Victor Rojas.JPGOne of the great things about baseball is the connections that extend throughout the game. People with Royals ties are all over the sport. The Texas Rangers alone have former pitcher Steve Busby broadcasting for them and their Executive Vice President, Communications and Public Relations is former catcher Jim Sundberg.

Former second baseman Cookie Rojas is also tied to the Rangers. One of his sons, Victor, has been broadcasting for them for five years. Victor has a unique perspective of the Royals and Kansas City. He was growing up when the team was experiencing its surge in the 70s and 80s. Victor is a Kansas Citian (a graduate of Blue Valley High School) who’s gone on to do big things in baseball. He serves as an English language play-by-play broadcaster for the Caribbean Series. He’s broadcast the Major League All-Star Game and he’s put together six seasons as a broadcaster in the Majors.

Victor was with the Rangers when they came to Kansas City in late August. And on their last day in town, he sat down with Around the Horn in one of the radio booths during batting practice to chat. With the renovations under way during the interview and now kicked into full swing, we asked Victor what he thought about the state of the stadium and asked about a few of his favorite memories. So here’s the final Touch ’em All interview from the 2008 season. Hope you enjoy…

Around the Horn: Having spent time in Kansas City when you were younger, what does seeing the stadium going through renovation mean to you?

Victor Rojas: It makes me excited to see what the finished product will look like. I spent so many summers here, down in the tunnels and in the family room and all that stuff. Just from an aesthetic standpoint, this ballpark has been spectacular from day one for me. You see the plans that are in place, and for me anyways, just because of the connection I have to the city, you just can’t help but be excited to see the finished ballpark.

10-3 Cookie 1.jpgATH:
You would have been eight or so when your dad finished playing?

VR: When he retired, I was in the fifth grade. I remember they had Cookie Rojas Night in September of ’77. I remember that like it was yesterday. Both sets of my grandparents were here. They brought us out and gave my dad a wood-paneled Volare Station Wagon. Which we took to Spring Training the next spring when my dad was a coach for the Chicago Cubs.

ATH: Good times in the old station wagon (thoughts of the Griswolds dancing through ATH head)?

VR: (he laughs) Plymouth Volare, yea. (laughs again)

ATH: Obviously the ballpark has undergone some transformation since you were young. They’ve taken out the turf and put in grass and the scoreboards and the fences moving in and then back out. When you look out and see this kind of a change to the ballpark, is it heart warming or are you a little sentimental?

VR: No, no, no, no. I think because the general feeling and thought process of the facility is remaining intact. You’re just kind of adding around it. I think the integrity of the ballpark remains. For me, of course the signature pieces are the crown scoreboard and the fountains out in right and into left-center. Because those things are staying and you get to see I-70 in the background, that’s the view that I always had and it will remain, with some tweaking in the left field corner and the right field corner and some seats adjusting and stuff like that.

10-3 Kauffman.jpgI think the best thing they did prior to this whole renovation process was: Number 1, take the turf out and put grass in and then go to the blue seats. It just makes the stadium pop. I know that if I weren’t in baseball and weren’t working in it, I’d come here every chance I got. I know the Royals have gone through some tough times over the last few seasons, but because of the memories I’ve had here, I love coming here. I love seeing the people who are still working in the front office – the few that are still here – and just coasting around the stadium.

ATH: Growing up with a father playing baseball, and then playing some minor league ball yourself, how did you ultimately get into broadcasting?

VR: The broadcasting thing was a whim. I was really young in high school. I was a 16-year-old senior at Blue Valley. I turned 17 in February and graduated in May. I wasn’t quite ready to play baseball at the collegiate level, or at least I didn’t think I was anyway. I was overwhelmed on a recruiting visit to Cal State-Fullerton. And because of that, we moved down to Florida right after I graduated in ’86. I graduated in ’85, but we moved in ’86.

So to pass the time, I was just going to take a year off, but my dad said why don’t you go to this radio broadcasting school and learn the business. And I did that for a year. Then I went on to play college baseball and the rest is history from that standpoint.

It was about 2000, the fall of 2000. I was kind of in one of those situations where – not a mid-life crisis – but I was kind of tired of doing what I was doing. So I thought maybe I’ll give this broadcasting thing a try. I had a friend that was coaching for the Newark Bears and Rick Cerone – the former catcher – owned the team and so I sent them my resume. The plan was, let me sign as an independent league player and in my off time, work with the radio station, do some interviews and kind of get into it that way. Well I’d worked in professional sports and Cerone didn’t want me as a player, not at 31, 32 yeas of age. But he said “You can come up here and you can put the team together since it’s independent ball, and then you can do color on the radio.”

I went up there and 30 days later – the way I tell it – our play-by-play guy quit before the season, so I became the play-by-play guy. And then a month later, our GM got fired and so I became the General Manager. So that was the beginning of my broadcasting career as the GM and play-by-play guy of the Newark Bears. I did that for two years.

Actually after my first year, I got in contact with this little thing called MLB Radio, which is now MLB.TV, Gameday Audio and a bunch of other things. They had some shows during the season and I got hired, in 2002, to do a morning show Monday through Friday. That led to doing the All-Star game in Milwaukee – the famous tie – for Then that off-season, a friend of mine decided to hook me up with an agent. He said, I’ll listen to your stuff and critique you, but I can’t take you on as a client, you can use me as a mentor type deal. And that winter the Diamondbacks were looking for a guy. Kevin Kennedy was also one of his clients and they said no to Kevin Kennedy because they wanted somebody full-time to do all the games and he was still doing some FOX games. So they hired me. And then the next offseason, the Rangers contacted me and hired me and I’ve been with them ever since. So really it was all just chance and luck – being in the right place at the right time.

10-3 Victor Rojas 1.jpgATH:
Some broadcasters have a bit of a learning curve moving from the National League to American League with different players, teams and some rule differences. Which do you prefer?

VR: It’s a completely different style of baseball. I really enjoyed spending time in the National League. For some reason the games are shorter. At least in my mind, the games are shorter, even with double switches and the like.

I think there’s more strategy involved, just from that standpoint in how you use your bench – the quality of the guys that you have to bring in late in games and stuff like that.  So I enjoyed that, but there’s no doubt about the familiarity. So I guess I am kind of an American League guy and will always be that way.

ATH: Did you ever get to go on the road with your dad when you were young?

VR: The only time I remember going on the road, it might have been ’76 or ’77. There was a family trip to California. We went to Anaheim and Oakland. I remember Anaheim because we went to Disneyland. And I remember Oakland because I remember taking my first helicopter ride over Alcatraz and back in those days, the A’s were pretty good. So they packed them in and they put the visiting families up the first base line in the upper deck. I remember my mom was royally, royally, upset about it. She couldn’t wait to get back here and tell the folks in the ticket office here. And my brother caught a foul ball, which was the first foul ball I’ve ever seen a friend of mine catch in a game.

I think that’s the only trip I remember going on when he was playing. I’ve visited with him since then when he was working.

ATH: Growing up in Kansas City, would you say that Kansas City is your favorite place to visit when you’re on the road with the Rangers?

VR: Yea. People ask me all the time what’s your favorite ballpark? What’s your favorite city? This place will always have a pull for me. It will always be the number one place for me. We stay at the Plaza, I have friends here. So this will always be number one for me. Personally this is the place for me. Seattle would be nice because I like the city and the ballpark.

10-3 Kauffman 2.jpgOf the newer ballparks, Pittsburgh is probably for me, the nicest, aesthetically, with the Roberto Clemente bridge and everything. But for me, Kansas City will always be number one because of the ties.

ATH: When you’re calling a game, what do you pull from? Is it the years that you watched when you were younger or is it mostly from your time playing?

VR: I think it’s a combination. I think, just like anything else, the more you do it, the more comfortable you feel. The more times you see things, you react in certain ways. I think you just draw on your own experiences to decipher what’s going on on the field and be able to explain it from a broadcasting standpoint, especially on radio, where you have limited time. When your doing color and you’re not on the play-by-play side, you have to get everything in between pitches. I think you fall back to, if something happens that you recall a specific instance when you were a player and that happened to you, then sure that pops up.

But for me, I follow baseball so much, I have a pretty decent recall where I can say “Hey, wasn’t there a situation a couple years ago with the Yankees and the Red Sox…” and I kind of base my explanation on those experiences as opposed to just what I did on a baseball field or what my dad did on a baseball field. The ins and outs and the nuts and bolts of the games, where you’re supposed to throw on a cut-off man and baserunning blunders, that kind of stuff is like second nature to me. I don’t know how to explain it. It’s just there. But as far as the storytelling part of it and what happened in your life, if that maybe coincides on the field then I can relate it or maybe fall back on what I’ve seen my dad go through?

ATH: Is that type of thing that you enjoy about what you do now, is the storytelling?

VR: Yea. And it all depends about the time of year. Both of our teams are out of it. A month ago, we were talking about the Rangers and the Wild Card and they were four and a half games out of it. So we were talking about the excitement of August and September.

But now, you do have to rely on different ways to keep the listener interested. Maybe you’ll bring in some off-field kind of stuff, like I was playing golf this morning with a couple buddies and a funny thing happened. If the game is out of hand and there’s some dead space, so you bring that kind of stuff up. A game like last night, it was two hours and change. You’ve got two pretty good guys going out there and throwing the ball well with a couple unearned runs, that’s all baseball. But the Rangers tend to play a lot of three, three and a half hour games.

ATH: You and your dad were both in the Angels organization. Were you there at the same time when you were in their minor league system?

10-3 Cookie 2.jpgVR:
Dad was there from ’82 through ’92, so the first couple of years of my minor league career.

ATH: What was that like? Did you get to work with him?

VR: Didn’t see him at all. He did come out. He was actually managing in ’88, when I was out in college in the desert in Palm Springs, California. I actually spent the summer with him that year. But when I actually started playing for the Angels, maybe one time he came to Arizona in ’90, but that was when he was scouting.

ATH: Were you a clubhouse kid when you were growing up?

VR: Oh yea. Today’s players are younger and aren’t married or don’t have kids. But it seemed like when I was growing up, from Marty Pattin to Al Fitzmorris to B-Mac to Kimmer Brett. There were tons of guys downstairs, Dusty Wathan, it just seemed like there were kids all over the place.  Amos Otis’s kids were there.

Now it’s like the kids that are there are babies. I think it’s just from that standpoint that guys are getting to the big leagues a lot faster.

ATH: What were some of your favorite memories from those years?

VR: The best part for me it just going out and shagging during batting practice.  Dad was pretty strict about going out and shagging and once B.P. is over, shower up and get out of the clubhouse. This is where we work, respect that and I still carry that over to today. I go downstairs, get my lineup and get out. I don’t hang out down there.

In this ballpark, the best times we ever had were during the games in the family room with the tape-ball game we would have. We would end in nine innings and we were just drenched in sweat. And there was this dolly, kind of like a thing that paramedics use. It was almost like a stretcher on wheels. Well there was one in there and we would stand on it, lean it back and race it around the room with it. That was to me the best part of it. Just hanging out with the guys…and having a crush on Jenny Splittorff. (Around the Horn and Victor both laugh)

ATH: Well, it’s a good thing that was caught on tape. Thank you so much for your time.

VR: No problem.


Greatest Hitter: Don Mattingly, for me. I have personal reasons behind that. Even before I met him, I just loved his approach at the plate. My daughter’s name is Mattingly. Her name is Mattingly Grace and not after Marl Grace. Her grandmother’s name is Grace.
Greatest Pitcher: Not because he’s our boss or the team president, but Nolan Ryan. It’s tough to argue with Roger Clemens and what he did in his career, especially early on and in college. From my forty years on this earth and the limited guys I’ve seen, it’d probably have to be Nolan Ryan. I say Nolan, but the term greatest is tough to define. With what I’ve seen I have to say him because of the strikeouts and the no-hitters and just overall dominance. And he did it in such a fashion that he was almost humble that he did something. I mean Randy Johnson was fun to watch in Arizona, but it has to be Nolan.
World Series: I’m a huge Joe Maddon fan because he was my minor league coordinator when I was in the Angels system. That being said, I’m going to go with the Angels and the Cubs probably in the National League. It’ll probably be the Cubs and the Angels and I’ll go with the Angels because they probably have the upper hand in pitching.

The Final (Con)Quest

The Royals opened their final road trip last night with a 6-2 victory over the Tigers. They are now one-game back from the Bengals as Trey Hillman’s club continues to play well in September.

Hillman has said he wants to finish out of the cellar and the team is responding. 9-23 DeJesus.jpgThey have shaved 7.5 games off their fifth-place deficit since August 31. How? Let’s go Around the Horn…

David DeJesus placed the Royals on his back last night, collecting seven total bases and falling a homer shy of the cycle. In his seventh career four-hit effort, DeJesus scored twice and added his 73rd RBI of the season. He’s hit in 13 straight, averaging .420 over his streak.

That has been an absolute key to the September surge. Timely hitting has carried the Royals with three separate players compiling hitting streaks of 10 or more games this month. Joining DeJesus is Jose Guillen who had a career-high 14 gamer from Sept. 4-17 and has hits in 17 of his last 19 games. The Royals also have found a regular second baseman in the wake of Mark Grudzielanek’s season ending early with Alberto Callaspo, who has both looked solid turning the double play and is in the midst of a career-high 16-game hitting streak. Callaspo’s streak is tied for the longest by any Royal this season. 9-23 Guillen.jpgGuess who has the other 16-game hitting streak in 2008? Here’s a hint, his initials are D.D. and he wears No. 9.

Thanks to these three, the Boys in Blue are delivering for their manager in a big way. They are 8-2 in their last 10 and 14-7 in September. They own the highest American League September batting average at .295, they are second to only Cleveland in the A.L. in wins this month and the pitching staff’s 3.88 ERA is third with their .239 opponent’s average second.

The Royals may have only three game left on FSN-Kansas City, but it turns out they have four more TV games. Saturday’s game against the Minnesota Twins, who are 2.5 games behind the White Sox at the moment, has been moved to FOX. The Twins, who are home against Chicago now, may still be vying for their playoff lives.

Instead of a 6:10 start, the game will now begin at 2:55 with Gil Meche making his last start of the season. The change will mark the Royals second exposure to the FOX spotlight this summer. You may recall the blisteringly hot day in Kansas City on August 2, when the Royals played the White Sox on FOX.

In the first of two-straight 19-hit affairs, the Royals beat the Pale Hose, 9-7. 9-23 Meche.jpgThe temperature at first pitch that day was 95, but the heat index soared to over 110. So don’t miss it this Saturday, the Royals will get in on the playoff action again, playing the second game of a three-game season-ending series.

David DeJesus’ four-hit effort last night is his third at Comerica, where he is hitting .357 in 36 career games…Gil Meche became the Royals first 13-game winner since Paul Byrd notched 17 wins in 2002…The team’s 14 September wins are the most since 2000 (14-14) with a 15th victory being the best since 1987 (15-13).

Around the Horn would like to announce that due to the ongoing renovations at Kauffman Stadium, we had to vacate yesterday, leaving behind our old press box and working environment. The only thing left populating the offices where we once worked are construction workers who are busy tearing those offices apart. It was a sad day for all of us who were moving yesterday. That press box was the original, created in 1973. We just thought you, our loyal readers, would like to know what’s up with us.

Reminders: The Royals Charities car auction on September 26. Vote for Mark Teahen for the Roberto Clemente Award and Buddy Blattner, Fred White and Ryan Lefebvre for the Ford C. Frick Award

Today’s lineup:
DeJesus CF
Aviles 2B
Guillen RF
Shealy 1B
Teahen LF
Butler DH
Gordon 3B
Olivo C
Pena SS

Greinke P

Today’s <official a NotesOfficial Game Notes.

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Overhaulin' your stadium

If your looking for today’s lineup, its in the entry directly below this one.

On Monday the Royals Media Relations department along with Vice President of Ballpark Operations & Development 8-13 Renovation.jpgBob Rice and Owner’s Representative John Loyd took some of K.C.’s media on a hard-hat tour of the K. The renovations have kicked into almost full swing with the competition of the last home stand and the removal of seats.

Rice said the key to a 90-95 percent completion by Opening Day 2009 (tentatively April 10) is to turn over as much of the stadium as early as possible. So your Kauffman Stadium won’t ever look quite like this again. Changes are afoot and construction is happening fast (Around the Horn sat through an entire game without noticing another level of steel had been added to the top of the new Hall of Fame building in left field).

As we go through the tour keep in mind you can click on any photo to see a larger version. And you can click here for a computer animated tour which premiered a few weeks ago. 

8-13 Front Office.JPGThe tour started on the first base side of the stadium near the George Brett statue. This building which is going up directly in front of where the front doors to Kauffman used to is will house the Royals’ offices.

8-13 Front.jpg.jpgWhen it’s all finished, it should look like this computer generated mock-up. The sweeping lines of the roof are mimicked by the sweeping atrium of the building. The atrium by the way, will serve as a food court for the upper deck level.

8-13 Legacy Brick.jpgUnderneath the building, a new grand entrance will be created. And the Legacy Bricks which are for sale here, will be placed for all to see. These Bricks are tentatively planned for the grand entrance and the entrances on either side of the ballpark.

8-13 Ticket Office.JPGHere you can see the old ticket office and entrance to the K. The bottom floor of the Royals administration building will house the new ticket office and ticket windows as well as a new retail store.

8-13 Concourse Exapansion 2.JPGAround the Horn has heard some of the concerns about the constricted concourses, which have been made worse this season by the construction. If the figures are still true from what we heard earlier this season, that space will be expanded by 40 percent.

In this picture, you can see the plywood wall which marks the current end to the concourse. You can see the expansion of that space being built.

8-13 Concourse Exapansion.JPGAs you can see, the new concourses jut out from the stadium, but follow the contours of the original building. That has been a big push during this project. The developers wanted to preserve the original lines and look of the stadium but update the 1973 model to fit in the 21st century.

Again, in this picture, you can see the original pillars which mark the end of the current concourse and then you see the significant expansion.

On the ground level, this area is being prepped for new concession stands, which are being built directly behind the current concessions. When the season is over, the old concessions will be demolished and the space they occupy now will serve as the new expansion. You can see some of that toward the bottom.

There will also be new restrooms constructed behind the old ones.

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The biggest news revealed on Monday to the media was the removal of seats. The Kauffman Stadium capacity will drop to around 27,000 for the next home stand.

The biggest portions of seats removed are these which seat above the crosswalk behind home plate. Six sections are being removed this season to allow construction workers to begin the Diamond Club.

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The undertaking for building a new restaurant behind home plate is huge. The construction also means the Hall of Fame and all areas behind sections 105 to 106 will be offline for the remainder of the season.

These areas will be walled off so the Diamond Club can be completed in time for ’09. It will be a step above the Stadium Club and will be not quite as high as the Crown Club.

8-13 Bob Rice.JPGHere’s a picture of Bob Rice talking to some of the media who came out. In the left corner of the picture, you can see the steel framework of the new Royals Hall of Fame which is directly behind the visitor’s bullpen.

The two-story structure will house meeting rooms and offices in the bottom floor. The top floor will have a complete history of baseball in Kansas City with special tributes to the Kauffmans, George Brett and the 1985 team.

8-13 Graphic.jpgThe Hall of Fame is just the first portion of the left field side of the outfield experience. On the left field side will also be a full-sized Little K, a carousel, video pitching and batting tunnels and much more.

The outfield experience will wrap completely around the stadium. Because of this, some seats in the last few sections left field have been removed to allow for the extension of the crosswalk into the outfield and Gate C has been closed until 2009.

8-13 Stadium.JPGIn right field, the construction has been just as vigorous, but not as visible. The original field access tunnel wrapped around behind the scoreboard. That wouldn’t flow with the plans, so a new one needed to be excavated and the built.

With it complete now, skeletons of buildings are bound to start popping up in right field.

8-13 Graphic 1.jpgThe biggest signature for right field will be the restaurant and the Taste of K.C. A walk of Fame will join the two portions of the outfield experience; complete with statues of the Royals greats.

And for those chowing down in right field, a hi-def video board will keep them in tune with the action on the field.

The outfield experience is a major part of what’s changing, but Bob Rice insists each Royals fan will notice the differences. And Around the Horn is sure you will… if you haven’t already.

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Kauffman Stadium policy on the removal of fans

We have received numerous calls regarding the removal of a fan from Kauffman Stadium during the ninth inning of last night’s game. With this in mind, we’d like to briefly touch on fan decorum in order to keep Kauffman Stadium one of the best and most fan-friendly venues in all of baseball.

Security personnel have the jurisdiction to remove or relocate any fan who:

– consistently uses foul language
– throws any objects onto the field of play
– interferes with a ball still in play
– creates a disturbance that hampers the enjoyment of fans in the surrounding areas

The Royals feel that the game of baseball is to be enjoyed by fans young and old. We encourage fans to be boisterous in cheering for the Royals, but always be cognizant of others. The Royals appreciate your continued cooperation on this matter and hope to see you out at Kauffman Stadium in the very near future.

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Some CrownVision Coverage…

Kauffman Stadium’s CrownVision will be getting some national attention Wednesday evening when it is featured on the Discovery Channel.

The manufacturing and installation of CrownVision will air on the show “Factory Made” on Wednesday (May 28) at 7 p.m. (CDT). So, in between innings of the Royals-Twins game (first pitch at 7:10 p.m.), tune into the Discovery Channel and check it out. Our CrownVision, according to the Discovery Channel website, should be in the second segment of the show, right after a feature on a burrito production line (“60,000 burritos at one time”) and before the segment on “crafting cowboy boots.”

Last week, CrownVision received some local attention by gracing the front cover of Ink, a Kansas City Star publication that launched in April. Chris DeRuyscher, Royals Director of Game Entertainment, wears the headset in the CrownVision control room and was featured in the cover shot with the new HD videoboard – the largest HD videoboard in the world! If you haven’t picked up a copy, check out the online version of the article here.

And – as always – stay up-to-date on all the on-going renovations at Kauffman Stadium by checking out the Renovation page on

Opening Week at The K

Banny_Complete Game_cropped.jpgOn Monday morning, our email inboxes were full of photos from team photographer Chris Vleisides…all from Opening Week at Kauffman Stadium! Of course, there are lots of good photos. However, probably the best shot of the week, which welcomed more than 139,000 fans and two sell-out crowds to The K, was this one of pitcher Brian Bannister. 

Bannister tossed a complete game Sunday afternoon to lead the Royals to a 5-1 victory over the Twins and a 3-3 mark for the homestand. The Royals are now 7-5 to start the season and are on their way to the West Coast for a seven-game road trip against Seattle (two games), the Los Angeles Angels (two) and the Oakland A’s (three). We are working on several photo galleries highlighting Opening Week at The K that should be posted this afternoon on Until then, enjoy a couple of these highlights and feel free to share your thoughts from the Royals first homestand of the season!

WHY SHOULD THE ADULTS HAVE ALL THE “WIENIE” FUN?: For the first time in Kauffman Stadium history, we hosted the “Teenie Wienie” Hot Dog Derby. jr dogs_2236.jpgSoon to be a Kauffman Stadium tradition, the Sunday junior version of the popular in-stadium Hot Dog Derby featured three kids – Adam “Ketchup” Cook (age 10), Molly “Relish” Cook (9) and Logan “Mustard” Darr (8) – who donned mini versions of the costumes and raced down the first base line. The end result: a little win for Ketchup!

FUN RUN FUN FOR ALL: The Royals welcomed back the Sprint Fun Run to Sundays at Kauffman Stadium. For the first one of the season, the fans toughed it out through the cold weather – luckily the game lasted just more than two hours – to run the bases. Although actual numbers have not officially been reported, observers of the Sprint Fun Run noticed several adult Royals fans taking advantage of the opportunity to head down to the field following a Royals win!

D20_8770a.jpgAUTISM AWARENESS: The Royals hosted Autism Awareness Night at The K on Friday and, in honor of the evening, had Jason McElwin, a former high school basketball student manager with autism spectrum disorder, throw out the ceremonial first pitch. McElwin obtained national attention in 2006 after scoring 20 points in the final four minutes of a high school basketball game – a story that we found out Royals pitcher Brian Bannister knew pretty well. In fact, as soon as Banny heard that “J-Mac” was throwing out the first pitch he asked to be his catcher…and then asked Jason to send him a copy of his book

2008_PB_Promotion_Billy1_1103.jpgPOWDER BLUE MADNESS: The Billy Butler Powder Blue Replica Jerseys – which went to the first 20,000 fans and were presented by FSN Kansas City – were a huge “hit” Saturday. Reports are that fans began lining up – in practically freezing weather – around 11 a.m., and when the gates opened at 4 p.m., the first-time jersey promotion went quick…within 40 minutes, at least 20,000 fans had entered the stadium and many were already sporting the powder blue top. To all those who came out Saturday, did you take the time to notice who might have been handing you your jersey? That’s right, Billy Butler, along with six of his teammates and Manager Hillman, took a break from their pregame routines to greet fans (and thank them for waiting in the cold!) at the entrance gates into The K.

SPEAKING OF COLD…: If you came out to The K at all this past week, we really don’t need to remind you of the cold temperatures, right? Pretty sure most of us here in the front office haven’t warmed up completely yet! Regardless, we made it through and – as we all cross our fingers and toes – hopefully that’s the last frigid homestand of the 2008 season!

CLOSING SHOT: And, as a final note, here is the classic overview shot from the Royals 2008 home opener – enjoy!

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