For Pete's Sake

Kansas City, Toronto libraries hug it out as Twitter battle ends after Royals win ALCS

This was one of the tweets from Toronto
This was one of the tweets from Toronto Twitter screenshot

You never know how playoff excitement is going to affect people. Kansas City is caught up in Royals fever as the postseason run has taken the team within a game of the World Series.

The Kansas City Public Library engaged in a fun Twitter battle with the Toronto library, both used book spines as their ammunition. It caught the attention of people everywhere in the two countries.

When the Royals won the American League Championship with a 4-3 victory in Game 6, both sides had kind words, er, book titles for the other.

Here is how the whole thing started. The KC library fired the opening salvo after the Royals won 14-2 in Game 4 of the American League Championship Series:

The Toronto library answered with this tweet in response:

The Kansas City library tweeted a warning ahead of Game 5 on Wednesday:

The Blue Jays won Game 5, beating the Royals 7-1. The Kansas City library responded shortly after the game:

The Toronto library was ready to celebrate the Game 5 victory:

UPDATE: The Kansas City library tweeted again on Thursday:

UPDATE 2: The fun continued on Friday with both sides continuing to throw barbs and the CBC in Canada getting involved. First from Toronto:

Then the CBC took a crack at it:

The Kansas City library was ready with a retort:

UPDATE 3: The Toronto library offered up this on Friday afternoon:

And the Kansas City library had this tip for their friends north of the border:

Last year, the Kansas City library used a similar approach to taunt the San Francisco Giants during the World Series, but with artwork instead of book spines.

This year, staff members realized they should use the one weapon all libraries have: books.

Liesl Christman, social media manager for the Kansas City Public Library, talks about the library war of words in tweets between libraries in Toronto and New York for pro baseball playoffs. The tweet 'war' has gained national media attention.

They collected a number of baseball, Kansas City and Toronto-related book titles to have on hand, and searched their catalog when they needed a specific phrase.

Their strategy has worked wonders. The library’s Twitter account has seen months worth of growth in the past few days, and even major news outlets like NPR are taking notice.

“I’m certainly hoping that we’re going to reach more people than we normally do,” said Liesl Christman, the library’s social media manager. “It’s all in good fun, as long as everyone’s enjoying the game.”

The CBC brought both sides together on its show:

[ Royals’ Jeremy Guthrie shows off his ‘Back To The Future’ shoes ]

[ Like the Royals, fans are furious with home plate umpire in Game 5 of the ALCS ]

The Star’s Melissa Graham contributed to this story

Pete Grathoff: 816-234-4330, @pgrathoff

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