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The Royals had to kick their 'Clash of Clans' habit to become World Series contenders

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This Kansas City Star article is a thorough, compelling look at how heightened focus and increased maturity turned the Royals' season around and helped make them surprise contenders.

Doing so involved kicking a rampant addiction: When Kuntz walked inside the room, he saw a scene that had become all too familiar in recent weeks: a collection of Royals with their heads down, eyes locked on their iPads. The game was called "Clash of Clans," and for a period of time this summer, its excessive usage by members of this club exasperated the coaching staff.

There's a happy ending, though, following a big, pivotal team meeting:

In the days after the meeting, the Royals won 16 of their next 19 games. The iPad usage became less conspicuous. Dyson insisted he planned on deleting the game all together.

"It's ending," he said. "I'm ending it. I'm winding it down. I'm toning it down. I'm trying to tone it down. It's going to be hard, but I'm trying to tone it down."

And, you know, they're in the World Series now. The lesson, obviously, is that if you stop playing Clash of Clans, you will also go to the World Series.