Royals need luck and skill

The thing about baseball is, you always figure you've got a chance. The more optimistic among us feel that way every spring, while the more pessimistic (or realistic) among us know this season isn't going to end happily … but maybe next season, or the season after, or even the season after that.

Examples in recent years abound, but perhaps the best is right before us. Three years ago, the Detroit Tigers lost 119 games. Two of their starting pitchers combined for 40 losses, and their highest-paid player (a) couldn't hit and (b) was owed nearly $20 million over the next two seasons. Sure, it was a pretty young team. But it's hard to see much promise in a squad of youngsters who just lost 119 games.

Today, the Detroit Tigers have the best record in the major leagues. In the eyeblink that's two years and two months, the Tigers have somehow transmogrified from very worst to very best. And if the Tigers could do it, then why not the Royals?