Toby Cook recalls the man on the Royals’ production team who had circled July 11 on his calendar, but left the spot blank. Cook, the Royals’ vice president of community affairs and publicity, wondered if the man was planning on taking the day after the All-Star Game off.
By KATY BERGEN
The Kansas City Star
He knew he’d need all day to switch the graphics and the videos, the software and the operating systems back to the ones used during the regular season.
The All-Star Game is over, and Royals employees are working hard to transition back into regular-season mode in time for Friday’s home game against the Chicago White Sox.
There’s a lot that has to be done, Cook said Wednesday.
Major League Baseball will have to dismantle its huge pregame tent where it hosted an invitation-only party. MLB plans to clear out by late this afternoon.
All-Star Game signage from the week’s events has to be taken down. Same with the two bleacher areas built on either side of the concourse for the 2,000 credentialed media that covered All-Star events.
And the stadium is a mess.
“But it’s a good mess,” Cook said. “That’s a good problem to have when you have three sold-out crowds.”
Royals director of media relations David Holtzman had several items on his agenda Wednesday as well.
“I worked from home today preparing for the Royals’ workout (today) and homestand,” Holtzman said.
And in the aftermath of the All-Star Game, Cook said compliments from Major League Baseball employees have rolled in — they said that Kansas City was one of the best All-Star Games they had worked.
One compliment he kept hearing was that the enthusiasm from Kansas Citians was overwhelming, more than some past cities that have hosted All-Star Games.
Baseball officials also pointed out the impressive numbers that Kansas City put up:
• Six thousand registered to be All-Star volunteers, though just under 2,000 were utilized.
• And all three Kansas City All-Star events at Kauffman Stadium — the Futures Game, Home Run Derby and All-Star Game — were at capacity. Usually, they have a 40 percent no-show rate at the Futures Game and Celebrity Softball Game on Sunday night, Cook said.
And as Kansas City breathes a sigh of relief that there were no hiccups associated with the big game, contracted cleaning crews and Royals staff continue to work hard to transform Kauffman Stadium by Friday.
“There’s no rest for the weary on this thing,” Cook said.
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