Letters from the week of July 15

Feature: “Royal Curse,” July 1

Swing and a Miss

Yes, the Royals have sucked for a long time, but for crissakes, did you know you can look up and verify statistics online?

Danny Jackson never won the Cy Young Award. He finished a distant second in 1988 to Orel Hershiser. Kirk Gibson played only one full season from 1986 to 1990. It was not mentioned that the Royals acquired him in 1991 for one full, mediocre season. Jose Guillen missed half of 2009 with an injury; he didn’t “sit out” the whole season. It only seemed that way. And the Royals have actually had three Rookies of the Year since 1985.

As a long-suffering Royals fan, I appreciated the article. I simply believe that their dismal performance stands on its own merit and needs no embellishment.

Josh Steinmetz

KC’s One NY Fan

Nice article, but definitely missing a few “curses.” The closer gap from Montgomery until Soria comes to mind: Ricky Bottalico, Roberto Hernandez, Ambiorix Burgos, all consistently awful. If the 2006 Royals — as terrible as they were in so many ways — did nothing but switch Burgos (and others) for a closer like Soria, they would have been above .500. Thirty-one blown saves! With a decent closer converting 75 percent of those saves, 23 losses could have been wins — turning a 62-100 team into an 85-77 team.

Chaim Mattis Keller
Flushing, New York

Editor’s note: Indeed, it seems the heavy use of sedatives caused by many years of Royals baseball inhibited our Googling. We wrote that Danny Jackson won a Cy Young Award; he, of course, did not. We neglected to mention the Rookie of the Year award Carlos Beltran won before he left for Houston. (We figured we dreamed that.) And while Ewing Kauffman did, in fact, die, he did it two years later than we wrote. In other words, in 3,000 words devoted to the misfortune of Royals fans, we actually underestimated our own misery. We’re not sure whether to apologize or go drinking, so we’ll just do both. Sorry.

Art: “Magnificent Beast,” July 1

Pencils Down, Please!

I am baffled by why Chris Packham put himself in the kind of situation he did when researching the most recent 2010 Flatfiles exhibition. Anyone even slightly familiar with the Kansas City arts community would realize that showing up on opening night and visibly taking notes would attract attention. Additionally, it seems that Mr. Packham misunderstood the genial nature of the exhibited artists during his note-taking process. Surely he has attended enough First Friday openings to realize that Kansas City has a very open and dialogue-driven art scene in which artists are excited to talk about their work?

I exhibited at the Flatfiles, saw Mr. Packham quietly taking notes and thought that this must be one of his first ventures into art writing. It seemed an experienced journalist or patron of the arts would understand that the opening reception of an exhibition of that nature is not only about what is exhibited but also about the representation of a community of artists. Sadly, Mr. Packham, through inexperience or a general mean-spirited nature, failed to understand that the 2010 Flatfiles exhibition featured artists who were proud to exhibit their work.

Jonah Criswell
Kansas City, Missouri

Correction: A sentence in the June 24 cover story (“Exit Boobies”) incorrectly identified “Sally” as a single mother.