Despite lofty expectations and World Series aspirations, the Kansas City Royals have underperformed and underwhelmed thus far in 2013, stumbling their way to a 21-29 record and a last-place standing in the American League Central.
In an attempt to curb the losing and kick-start an offense that ranks 24th in the league in runs scored this season, Kansas City made a not-so-surprising move Thursday.
As Mike Oz of Yahoo! Sports noted, the Royals reassigned hitting coaches Jack Maloof and Andre David to the minor leagues; the pair will be replaced by interim hitting coach George Brett. The Royals confirmed the news on Twitter.
#Royals announce that George Brett and Pedro Grifol will assume the interim hitting coach and special assignment coach roles, respectively.— Kansas City Royals (@Royals) May 30, 2013
The former Royals third baseman and career .305 hitter played all 21 of his professional seasons in Kansas City, earning 13 All-Star appearances, a World Series ring and an American League MVP award in the process.
He’ll be expected to turn that success into a little extra help for the Royals lineup.
Will George Brett spark Kansas City's lineup?
Brett had previously turned down several MLB coaching positions to avoid the “daily grind,” but with the Royals in desperate need of some help, the 60-year-old agreed to put his knowledge to good use, per an Associated Press report (via ESPN).
It won’t be the first time Brett has given his assistance to Kansas City’s core of young talent. The Royals’ all-time hits leader previously served as the team’s vice president of baseball operations and helped coach Kansas City’s hitters during spring training, according to The Sports Network (via kare11.com).
Despite his tremendous accolades, the legendary third baseman is perhaps best known for his infamous tirade following the "Pine Tar Incident" that initially negated his go-ahead home run in a game against the New York Yankees. Major League Baseball eventually overturned the ruling, but it’s hard to forget his reaction:
He probably won’t be doing any yelling at umpires this season, but Brett’s hitting acumen will hopefully spark Kansas City’s lineup and dig it out of its current slump—especially if the Royals hope to make any noise in the AL Central this season.