Ah, the Kansas City Star….
For all that it should be and what it is, let’s take a quick look at a few obvious shortcomings. Starting with its partial front-page headline Firday about the Kansas City Royals season-opening loss at home; "The future looks bright."
Now contrast that with a headline buried deep inside Sports Daily: "KC has smallest payroll."
That the Royals are fielding a team of largely young unknowns (again), likely to leave if and when they reach their peak playing levels, is underscored in the underplayed report.
That New York Yankee ‘s star Alex Rodriguez makes nearly twice as much as the entire Royals payroll for its starting lineup is the point the Star should be pounding home, rather than trafficing in statistics and naive optimism.
The Royals are fortunate to have the loyal local baseball fans they somehow still have, given the actions of its stingy owners. Aided and abetted in no small part by Star headlines such as, "Everyone eagerly awaits the arrival of young talent." A headline that might have read something like, "Here we go again…"
In "Automotive Marketplace" we are treated to a review of the once-affordable Audi A4.
It provides "more than entry level luxury," the headline tells us.
Hope so, an $43,000-plus entry level car. OK.
Swinging back to what passes for baseball in these parts, comes yet another insincere, A-section headline attempting to put a positive spin on this year’s Royals after their season opening loss: "The future looks bright, but until then, who are these guys?"
And hey, speaking of sports… whatever happened to the good, old days when the Star ran full and half page ads to drum excitement into its Greater Kansas City Day promotion? The naming of new co-chairs was generally somewhat of a big deal – you never knew what local would bask in the limelight. Until we learned last year that the chairmanship was a bought-and-sold distinction, rather than one accorded by merit.
The ads always included photos of local media and celebs and where they would be standing for locals to buy charity newspapers from them. Those days are gone, leaving little in the way of incentive for the local luminaries to participate in what’s left of a once-grand scale promotion.
Maybe there’s a reason the Star played this year’s Greater KC Day so close to its belt.
Because for the 8th unimaginative year running George Brett held down one of the co-chair spots. And for the second year mutual fund magnate Adam Bold anted up for the privilege of being Brett’s co-chair.
"We’re talking about my chairing it again next year and we’re talking about how to find a more efficient way to raise money," Bold told me after last year’s GKC Day. "You know, when they have hundreds of volunteers all over the city every year, I think there’s a better and more efficient way than to put people in the streets selling newspapers. I mean, sooner or later somebody’s going to get hit by a car."
The Star turned the other cheek on the diss and graciously accepted Bold (and his check) back this year.
But it still marshalled 1,500 – it claims – local rodeo clowns to stand in the street hawking papers. Sans almost anything in the way of an actual promotion of the event, the deal went down for the 24th straight year in a veritable news /excitement vacuum.
Raising the question, if they’re going to run things this low key, why not just write a check to charity and be done with it?