The Kansas City Royals celebrated their first championship since 1985 with a downtown victory parade Tuesday afternoon. Fans turned out in droves to attend the festivities after watching the Royals dispatch the New York Mets in five games to win the 2015 World Series.
AJ Cassavell of MLB.com passed along comments from Alex Gordon, who's been with the organization since it drafted him with the second overall pick in 2005, about what he expected given the long drought and the fans' extended wait for a championship.
"Oh, that is going to be so sweet," Gordon said. "I know what Kansas City has been through. Most of these guys weren't even born when we won it last. At least I was."
The 31-year-old outfielder hit the nail on the head.
The most enthusiastic member of the group, Jonny Gomes, carried an American flag and noted how the Royals didn't feature the award winners from other teams. But the fans went wild as he ran down how they beat all of those standout players as a team, per FOX Sports Kansas City:
Although things got underway a little behind the scheduled noon start, Mike Tufano of the Salute Podcast joked the Royals' track record suggested a comeback was on the horizon:
KCTV provided a shot of the large and growing crowd as the parade kicked off:
Damon Amendolara of CBS Sports Radio relayed another shot of the crowd:
Shain Bergan of KCTV pointed out some fans simply parked anywhere they could before walking the rest of the way to the parade:
The fans in attendance spanned a wide range of generations, including those who were enjoying the celebration rather than a day in school, as highlighted by MLB.com's Cut4:
There was also at least one non-human supporter in the crowd, per MLB GIFs:
Outfielder Jarrod Dyson, one of the heroes from the 12th inning of Game 5, thanked the fans who lined up several deep on both sides of the street, which the Royals showcased:
Alas, his ride had nothing on the one for Mike "Moose" Moustakas, according to Fox Sports MLB:
While that's pretty cool, Jenee Osterheldt of the Kansas City Star showed the reaction manager Ned Yost received along with the championship trophy:
The parade was followed by a celebration at Union Station.
Royals legend George Brett made it clear what he thought of the team, per 610 Sports Radio KC:
Baseball Tonight noted Yost had high praise for the fans:
World Series MVP Salvador Perez, who was entertaining while leading the chants, had a simple message, as noted by KMBC:
If starting pitcher Edinson Volquez is right, the Royals will be doing it again one year from now, according to Jeff Rosen of the Kansas City Star:
And, if there's ever a movie made about this group of Royals, the team showed one fan who already has a potential name in mind:
Kansas City reached the World Series last year only to fall one game short. Being able to complete the journey again before going on to finish the job this time is the ultimate redemption for a roster that's certainly greater than the sum of its parts.
In an era when teams are increasingly willing to accept strikeouts in search of power at the plate, the Royals play an old-school game. They fight through every at-bat, putting the ball in play and forcing opponents to beat them rather than beating themselves, which was especially effective in the playoffs.
Some may call it a fluke. The Royals are too busy celebrating to argue.