Kansas City Royals:
The Kansas City Royals have gotten of to a surprisingly slow start this season, but are looking to finish strong. The Royals currently have a 34-43 record, putting them in 5th place in the American League Central division. Offensively, outfielder Jose Guillen carries the Royals with his great 13 home runs and 60 RBIs, still early this season. Guillen is backed by outfielder David DeJesus and second baseman Alex Gordon, who combine for 16 home runs and 69 RBI's thus far this season. On defense, pitchers Zack Greinke and Gil Meche lead the way at the mound. Greinke has pitched for 100 innings and 74 strikeouts, while Meche has pitched a team-leading 80 strikeouts in 95 innings, despite pitching only the 3rd most innings on the team. The Royals look to regain their historic franchise reputation by coming up with some sort of a turnaround to this season, getting ready for a playoff run next season. Tickets are selling slow while the team is rebuilding to be a competitive franchise for next year.
The Kansas City Royals are a relatively young
franchise only being around since 1969. The team enjoyed great
success in the ‘70s and ‘80s. The Royals won 6 American
League titles in the two decades. Two of the reasons for all
this success were pitcher Larry Gura and Hall of Fame third baseman
George Brett. Brett played his entire 21 season career in Kansas
City and picked up an MVP award in 1980 and a Gold Glove award
in 1985. During this span the Royals made it to the World Series
twice, once in 1980 and another time in 1985. The 1980 World
Series pinned the Royals against the National League’s
Philadelphia Philles. The Phillies jumped out to a 2-0 lead and
the Royals took the next two games to even the series up. The
Royals then lost the last two games of the series to fall to
the Phillies 4-2. In 1985 the Royals had their hands full with
the powerhouse called the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cardinals
busted the series wide open by winning the first two games. The
Royals answered back by winning game three but fell into a 3-1
series deficit after dropping game four. The Royals went on to
win the next three games including a game 7 massacre of the Cardinals
11-0. That was their first and only crown and coincidentally
the last time the Royals made the postseason. In 2003 the Royals
were the surprise of Major League Baseball. The team led the
AL Central for a large part of the season only to see the divisional
crown and the postseason slip away. The team finished with an
83-79 record only seven games out of first place.
Kansas City doesn’t exactly possess the same resources that some of the
bigger market teams, like New York and Boston, do. The Royals are definitely
handicapped in off-season talks. Despite that the Royals were still able to land
two good free agents in catcher Benito Santiago and outfielder Juan Gonzalez.
The first thing one thinks of when they think of the Kansas City Royals is Carlos
Beltran. Beltran is one of the few “five tool” players that can do
everything. If the Royals aren’t in the hunt for the playoffs he will also
become the most coveted player during the trade deadline since Beltran is in
the final year of his contract and Kansas City won’t be able to pay him
what he will ask for. The other pillar in the final year of his contract is first
baseman/ designated hitter Mike Sweeney.
The Royals pitching staff is lead by ace pitcher
Darrell May. He is joined by other starters Jimmy Gobble,
Brian Anderson, and Zack Greinke. In the bullpen the man
that will close out the late innings is Jeremy Affeldt.
Kaufman Stadium is what the Kansas City Royals call home during the season.
This 40,793 seat stadium has been around since 1973 and showcases the largest
privately run fountain in the world measuring out at 322 feet.
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