Big League Stew - MLB

The Kansas City Royals have lost 524 games since 2004 and they've lost them in dozens of different and depressing ways.

None of those defeats, however, have come via stranger circumstances than Thursday's 4-3 loss to the Indians in Cleveland, which was sealed when Shin-Soo Choo's(notes) single bounced off a seagull, leading to the Tribe's winning run in the bottom of the 10th inning.

No, really. It did. Watch the video here.

OK, so there's a chance that Cleveland's Mark DeRosa(notes) would have scored safely even if the Rawlings had been cleanly fielded by Kansas City center fielder Coco Crisp(notes).

But Choo's line drive crashed into the flock of seagulls that has taken over Progressive Field in recent weeks and actually caused one to fall into a tailspin. The collision with the bird deflected the ball past Crisp, ensuring that DeRosa would score without a throw to the plate.

At this point, the Royals have to be feeling like the fates of the universe have aligned against them. After getting out to a 18-11 start and leading the AL Central by three games on May 7, Kansas City has lost 23 of its last 30 games and have the league's second-worst record. Even the season's lone superhero — pitcher Zack Greinke(notes) — has looked merely human lately. 

On the Indians' side, Choo received postgame calls from Dave Winfield, who advised him to seek legal representation and Randy Johnson(notes), who said he didn't think it was all that funny.

Alright, you got me. Neither of those men actually called Choo.

But you can find step-by-step pictures of the feathered frenzy in Cleveland below:  

Step 1: Choo's line drive bounds into center field, headed for the flock. Crisp reacts.

STEP 2: Perhaps either scared by the ball or the belief that Crisp is an approaching owl, the birds start to scatter while creating a screen capable of beating even Martin Brodeur. 

STEP 3:  The ball pulls a gut-punching change of direction on Crisp — just as the Royals did to their fans with this slump — after hitting one of the gulls. (Note the bird in the lower right hand corner crash landing after the collision).  

STEP 4: Crisp turns and his inner thoughts slur into slo-motion mode: "Nooooooooooo." 

STEP 5: Crisp motions for the batboy to fetch him his pellet gun.

STEP 6: "Who cares if Boras is already representing them? Give that bird a multi-year deal!"

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