TBS analysts are bullish about Royals’ chances in Wild Card Game

Kansas City Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer.
Kansas City Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer. Kansas City Star

Former Red Sox ace Pedro Martinez thinks youth could be served during Tuesday’s American League Wild Card Game.

Martinez is now a studio analyst for TBS, which is broadcasting the American League playoffs. During a conference call Monday, Martinez had praise for the Royals.

“I think Kansas City has as good of a chance as anybody because of the energy the kids bring. ….Believe it or not, it’s all about momentum, and Kansas City has that right now. If I was Kansas City, I would try to maintain my focus, keep the momentum going and use the energy that those young guys have.

“That’s what they bring to the table — a lot of energy, nothing to lose and a lot to gain by being there. This is a team you go out there relaxed against, thinking these kids are not going to be a big deal and then, before you know it, they’ve got you in the hole.”

Gary Sheffield, who played for eight teams in a 22-year career and is now a TBS analyst, said the Royals’ young players could thrive on making the playoffs for the first time.

“One thing that makes Kansas City so dangerous is they have a bunch of young players that are riding a high right now,” Sheffield said in the conference call. “They’re confidence level is going to go sky high. They’re not thinking about the pressure of the playoffs; they’re just thinking about being relevant in Major League Baseball. Now they are a relevant team. When they get into postseason play, they are just going to play free.”

To reach Pete Grathoff, call 816-234-4330 or send email to pgrathoff@kcstar.com. Follow him at Twitter.com/pgrathoff

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