In the middle of the Royals' celebration of winning their first World Series championship in 30 years last weekend was owner David Glass.
And he should have been.
Glass is under the radar right now. Fans and media are focusing the praise on the way Dayton Moore built the team, Ned Yost managed it and the players executed the game plan to win back-to-back American League pennants and erase the disappointment of losing the World Series to the Giants in seven games a year ago.
However, don't underplay the role of Glass, whose clubs had struggled through the start of his ownership before showing signs of becoming a factor in the AL Central with an 86-76 record in 2013. Now, the Royals are the reigning World Series champions, and a major factor was Glass having the patience to allow Moore to grow on the job, and then put into action the lessons he learned.
Glass hired Moore in 2006, when the Royals were in the midst of their fourth 100-loss season in five years. Three years later, Glass gave Moore an extension through '14. Moore's tenure is the third longest among front-office executives with the title of general manager, behind Brian Cashman of the Yankees (Feb. 3, 1998) and Jon Daniels of the Rangers (Oct. 4, 2005).
The Rangers haven't won a World Series since their inception as the expansion Washington Senators in 1961, but under Daniels' guidance they won their first two AL pennants in franchise history in 2010 and '11, and they have advanced to the postseason in four of the past six years.
Given the lengthy struggles of the Royals, there were uneasy times with the fan base. Their patience, however, has been rewarded.
Moore embraced the same approach that allowed the Royals to advance to the postseason seven times during the 10-year stretch from 1976-85, capped off by their first World Series championship in franchise history. He supplemented home-grown players with proven veterans -- an opportunity he was given because Glass gave his GM the time to build a foundation instead of looking for a quick-fix to the long-term struggles of the franchise. Glass avoided the temptation of trying to appease fans by firing and hiring for the sake of firing and hiring.
Second time around
The Royals became the 15th team in the 111 years of the World Series to lose a World Series one year and come back next year to win a World Series. They are the fourth team to make that rebound since the advent of the League Championship Series in 1969, joining the Orioles ('69-70), Yankees ('76-77) and A's ('88-89).
The Yankees have accounted for seven of the 15 rebounds. In addition to 1976-77, the Yankees lost a World Series one year and won the World Series the next in '22-23, '26-27, '42-43, '55-56, '57-58 and '60-61. Other teams were the Cubs ('06-07), Cardinals ('30-31 and '43-45), Tigers ('34-35) and Reds ('39-40).
The Royals' starting rotation worked 28 1/3 innings in their five-game World Series win against the Mets -- the ninth-fewest innings pitched for a rotation in a World Series of five or more games. The 2001 D-backs rotation pitched 50 1/3 innings in a seven-game victory against the Yankees -- the most of any rotation since the addition of a third tier in the postseason in 1995, according to Stats Inc.
At the other extreme, the 2007 Rockies and '04 Cardinals rotations worked only 17 1/3 World Series innings (both in four-game Series losses). Curt Schilling of the '01 D-backs (21 1/3 innings) and Chris Carpenter of the '11 Cardinals (19 innings) both carried higher workloads than the entire rotations for the '07 Rockies and '04 Cardinals.
It is all a part of the changing of the philosophy in pitching.
The 1985 Royals rotation worked 55 1/3 of a possible 62 innings against the Cardinals -- the most of any franchise since '58, and the ninth-highest total in World Series history. The record for World Series innings by a rotation was 69 2/3 innings by the 1912 New York Giants.
Deacon Phillippe of the Pirates set the World Series record for innings pitched with 44 in the inaugural World Series of 1903. Bill Dinneen, who pitched for the Red Sox in that World Series, is No. 2 on the all-time list with 35 innings. Since the advent of divisional play in '69, Luis Tiant holds the highest innings total for a starting pitcher with 25 for the Red Sox in '75. Bruce Hurst of the '86 Red Sox and Jack Morris of the '91 Twins worked 23 innings each.
• Saturday is the 52nd anniversary of Yankees catcher Elston Howard becoming the first African-American to win the AL MVP Award.
• Thursday is the 95th anniversary of Kenesaw Mountain Landis being unanimously elected as the first Commissioner of Major League Baseball.
Tracy Ringolsby is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.