I remember. I remember the competitive nature in which you pitched every single game. Your mood could set the tone for the entire team. It was easy to see how much losing hurt you. There was no one who wanted to win more than you did. It was easy to tell how locked in you got when you took the hill. No one had the laser-focus that you did. I remember that, Ace.
I remember the pure joy in which you carried yourself with at times. You had a blast playing a game with your best friends. You made baseball look too easy. Baseball is hard, very hard. It wasn’t for you. You never, ever backed down from a challenge (or a fight). It didn’t matter who your opponent was (Trout, Machado), you didn’t back down from ANYONE. You were fearless, relentless, and you refused to let anyone mess with you or your brothers. You truly were the little brother that fought like the big brother. No one messed with your family, I remember that.
I’m not sure there’s ever been another Royal that has played with as much passion as you did, Ace. Not since number 5 retired, and his place in Royals history has been cemented pretty well. I’ll never forget you, Ace. And I’ll always remember you.