Royals

Cancer survivor missed the Royals playoff games last year, but not this year

Diane Lines couldn’t afford the playoffs last year because she was battling cancer, but she was at the stadium Thursday night.
Diane Lines couldn’t afford the playoffs last year because she was battling cancer, but she was at the stadium Thursday night.

No doubt tickets weren’t cheap for the fans who were headed into the stadium Thursday night for the Royals playoff game.

But for season ticket holders like Diane Lines, 67, who’s been going to all 81 home games for the past eight years, it’s hard to let a playoff game pass by.

Last year, though, she had to. The Kansas City woman was battling breast cancer and the cost of the playoff pack was too much.

“I wanted to pay my medical bills,” she said, standing outside the first base gate Thursday afternoon.

Yet the woman who was raised a Dodgers fan still showed up at Kauffman for every playoff game, just to be a part of it all. “And it was great out here,” she said, smiling.

Twice, scalpers recognized her outside the gate and asked why she wasn’t inside like always. For those two playoff games, scalpers gave her free tickets, she said.

For Game 7 she sat on a patch of grass and watched the game from someone’s big screen.

This year, with a pink breast cancer bracelet on one wrist and a “Survivor” one on the other, she’ll be in section 429 as long as her team keeps winning.

“I knew I had to be here this year,” said Lines, who’s retired and lives on social security. So she saved. Paying off her 2007 Chevy Cobalt helped. And she won’t miss the $1,000 she paid for the playoff pack of tickets.

“I’ve been waiting on this all my life,” said Lines, who said she once saw Sandy Koufax pitch.

She won’t always being decked out in blue, from her tennis shoes and team socks to her glittery KC hat and Moose ears.

“Tomorrow I’m wearing my pink,” said the breast cancer survivor.

Laura Bauer: 816-234-4944, @kclaurab

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