Former Royals DH Billy Butler, now with the Athletics after signing a three-year, $30 million deal, took out a full-page ad in the Thanksgiving edition of the Kansas City Star, reports MLB.com’s Dick Kaegel. The headline read, “Thank you for the amazing ride!”
“When this journey began in 2004, I had no idea how lucky I was to be a part of the Kansas City Royals family. From the very beginning, the Kansas City community and the entire Royals organization treated me and my family with respect, love and class. Thank you to the Glass family, the front office and the entire staff — without each of you I would not have had this fantastic experience and opportunity. Thank you to all my Royals teammates — without you I would not be the person I am today. Most importantly, thank you to all the fans that provided unwavering support for 10 years. The great community of Kansas City also allowed us to be successful off of the field through our Hit-It-A-Ton foundation. For all of these reasons and many more, we are very proud to say we were Kansas City Royals and there will always be a part of us that will #BEROYAL.”
Butler, 28, was taken in the first round (14th overall) in the 2004 draft by the Royals. Though his 2014 production was arguably the worst of his eight-year career in the major leagues, he helped the Royals reach the American League Wild Card game and ultimately ascend to the World Series, where they lost in seven games to the Giants.
In those eight seasons with the Royals, Butler hit .295/.359/.449 with 127 home runs and 628 RBI.