For Pete's Sake

Take a look at the changes made to Kauffman Stadium ahead of season opener

This is what will greet fans from I-70.
This is what will greet fans from I-70.

Toby Cook’s title with the Royals doesn’t need an explanation: He’s the vice president of publicity.

And here’s something to know about the Royals the 2016 season is about to start: They are going to promote the fact that they are the defending World Series champions at Kauffman Stadium.

“We are kind of giving ourselves permission to celebrate the World Series as long as it makes sense,” Cook said as he stood in front of the Royals Hall of Fame, which is adorned with an iconic photo from last year’s celebration at Union Station. “It’s OK to celebrate for at least the first couple months.”

The phrase “2015 World Series champions” is scattered about the stadium, from the back crown vision board to the top of the dugout, and that’s just one of the many changes that will greet fans.

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There are photos all around the Hall of Fame from last year, including pictures from memorable games from the playoffs. The World Series trophy is in the Hall of Fame, along with other memorabilia.

Huge banners are in various spots around The K. The safety netting has been extended along the dugouts, as well.

The Rivals bar in right field is completely revamped. It is now an indoor/outdoor option, and is easier to access from the concourse. Fans can buy tickets that face the field and have a spot to put down a drink.

There are eight beers on tap, 30 different packaged beers, cocktails and milk shakes (with and without alcohol). New food will be offered also.

“If you want to leave your seats for a couple of innings, this is a great spot,” said Amanda Turk, the Royals’ coordinator of publicity. “If you want to get away from the weather, it’s a great spot.”

A dozen 60-inch televisions have been added along with a huge HD projection screen.

The Fox Sports Kansas City broadcasters moved to left field last postseason and that’s where they will remain.

A video showing the changes is above.

Pete Grathoff: 816-234-4330, @pgrathoff