For Pete's Sake

Royals’ victory in last year’s Wild Card Game was inspiration for a children’s book

Sleep didn’t come easy for anyone who watched last year’s American League Wild Card Game.

The wild twists and turns made for a happy ending for Royals fans as Kansas City beat Oakland 9-8 in 12 innings at Kauffman Stadium.

It also resulted in a happy children’s book, “The Night The World Turned Royal Blue.”

Writer Jason Sivewright of Overland Park was at the game, which was just weeks after the birth of his son, Isaiah.

“When I got home ... I still had the adrenaline still pumping through my body,” Sivewright said. “I don’t even know that I got to sleep until much later. I just looked at him and had some thoughts and that next morning I just kind of wrote it.”

Sivewright, 33, grew up Royals fans, but like so many of his generation, had never seen his team in the playoffs. For a fan base quenched for postseason success, the Royals’ first playoff victory in 29 years was one to remember.

“That Wild Card Game was just incredible,” he said. “It was not only the best baseball game I’ve ever seen, it was just the best game of any sport I’ve been at or heard about. I came home that night and looked at my infant baby son, (and said) how will I ever be able to explain to him what I just saw. The book just came out of that.”

Actually, it started as a poem. Sivewright thought he’d add Instagram photos to illustrate the story. But his friends, Kevin and Kristen Howdeshell, convinced him it needed to be a children’s book. Fortunately for Sivewright, the Howdeshells, who live in Waldo, are illustrators.

The trio thought the book would be a keepsake for family and friends. However, it was so well received by those who saw it that the trio had the book published by CreateSpace Publishing, and it’s available online at Barnes and Noble and Amazon.

It’s been an amazing story for Sivewright. After his mom passed away three years ago following a battle with cancer, he wasn’t sure what kind of writing to do.

“I never figured the Royals would be part of that journey,” he said. “I’ve always loved baseball, always loved the Royals, so it’s kind of funny how God works things out sometimes.”

You can see some of the pages in this video:

Author Jason Sivewright discusses how he came to write the children's book, How The World Turned Royal Blue.

Lions play a big part in Sivewright’s book on the Royals. And a lion is part of his next project. It’s called “The Sugar Lion,” and Sivewright said it’s a 21-book series based on the gospel of John in The Bible.

There is a kickstarter page to get the project published.

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

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