In the moments before they walked on stage at the Sprint Center on Saturday night, sending a sold-out arena into a frenzy, a group of five Royals players stood backstage and listened to a brief request from a member of Garth Brooks’ crew.
“Do not shoot anyone in the front row.”
The players — Eric Hosmer, Whit Merrifield, Brandon Moss, Travis Wood and Drew Butera — attended Saturday night’s concert at the Sprint Center, sitting in the third row. They joined Brooks on stage during his performance of “Friends in Low Places,” clutching T-shirt cannons that fired shirts and confetti streamers into the seats.
“It was a rush, man,” Merrifield said. “It was a rush to be on stage with a guy like Garth, just a superstar of superstars, to share in that moment was something I’ll never forget.”
Merrifield said the players also met Brooks for a few minutes before the show. By early Sunday morning, as the Royals returned to their clubhouse, Hosmer, Merrifield and Moss were still buzzing about the night.
“He was in a ‘Life is Good’ T-shirt with some ratty jeans and some regular New Balance shoes on, just hanging out,” said Merrifield, who identified himself as longtime fan. “You’d never know … It was so cool.”