JACK'S SMACK: Let the Royals compete

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Sometimes I get the feeling the Royals are going to break through and actually finish - above 500.

It's happened only one time in the last 20 years.

Here we are at the halfway point - and I'll be darned if they're not right there among the division leaders.

You say - how can that be?

The Royals haven't won two in a row-- for two weeks.

But hey, they're only 4 games out of first place.

It took a half a season for Dayton Moore and Ned Yost to cut bait with Jeff Francoeur.

With Francoeur out of the way, David Lough put his name alongside Brett, McRae, Damon and Lonnie Smith as the only Royals to have four extra base hits in the same game.

Lough is hitting over .300.

That's pretty good stuff for a guy who is making the major league minimum salary.

Over the weekend, the Royals called up Johnny Giavotella from Omaha to take over at second.

I give Dayton Moore credit for admitting he screwed up coming out of spring training with Francoeur and Chris Getz.

The Royals have 13 games left before the All-Star break. Six of them against the first-place Cleveland Indians.

I keep looking to the east, watching what the Pirates are doing in search of their first winning season in 20 years.

They've got the best record in baseball right now.

It's all about pitching in Pittsburgh.

We've got some of that as well. And for that reason, we have hope.

But you watch, the Pirates will do something before the trading deadline to bolster their team.

We can only plead with the Royal's management to do something before the deadline to make sure this team has a chance  to compete to the finish.

They owe us that.

That's Jack's Smack.

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