K.C. owner not ready to change leadership

Glass pleased with Pena, Baird despite the team’s woes.
Friday, July 2, 2004 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 12:22 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, July 1, 2008

By KANSAS CITY — The owner of the American League’s worst team remains fully confident in his manager and general manager.


David Glass, the owner of the Kansas City Royals, says he is confident about the Royals’ future, though they have the worst record in the American League.

That’s certain to put David Glass at odds with a growing contingent of Kansas City fans watching the Royals’ once-promising season fall apart.

With a 29-46 mark at the beginning of July, the franchise record of 100 losses seems easily within reach. That’s triple-digit losses for a retooled team that several experts expected to win the AL Central title and end a 19-year postseason drought.

Distribution of blame for the season began Wednesday with the firing of pitching coach John Cumberland. With a team ERA of 5.01, 13th among 14 teams, it seemed an easy call.

Why, say many fans, stop there? What about manager Tony Pena and General Manager Allard Baird?

“I am pleased with Allard and Tony both,” Glass said.

“I think they’re doing the best they can. They are both very capable individuals. You’re not always right with everything you do.”

If there is a rock bottom for the Royals this lost season, it might have come in the past few days. First they traded their best player, Carlos Beltran, to Houston because they were not going to be able to afford him as a free agent.

Then St. Louis swept a three-game series, and they had to suffer the embarrassment of their Kauffman Stadium being crammed with Cardinals fans.

Then came more bad news. Third baseman Joe Randa went on the disabled list for at least a month, joining Aaron Guiel, Juan Gonzalez, Benito Santiago and Jeremy Affeldt.

Glass insists he’s suffering along with the fans.

“I am obsessed with winning, and I despise losing,” he said. “I don’t handle losing well. It’s a very disappointing year for all of us.”

There seems no relief in sight. Pena, the 2003 AL Manager of the Year when a 19-3 start led to a surprising 83-win breakthrough, is criticized for about every move he does or does not make.

Still, he said he isn’t worried about getting shoved out the same door that swung open for Cumberland.

“I’m here today. I live in the present and I am not afraid to get fired,” he said.

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