The Kansas City Royals are a professional baseball team based in Kansas City, Missouri. They are known by fans as the Royals, The Blue Crew, The Boys in Blue, and The Crowns and play as a member of the American League (AL) Central division. The team was founded as an expansion franchise in 1969 and has played in four World Series, winning twice.
The new team quickly became a powerhouse, making seven playoff appearances from 1976 to 1985. It was led by stars including Amos Otis, Hal McRae, John Mayberry, George Brett, Frank White, Willie Wilson, and Bret Saberhagen. The team has always remained competitive throughout the early 1990s, before it seemed to slow down during the 1995 to 2012 seasons.
But things swung back in the Royals favor during the 2014 season where they advanced to the World Series. The Royals then won the team’s first AL Central division title in 2015 and later their second World Series championship that same year.
As of 2021, the Royals have an all time win-loss record of 4,001-4,344 (.479).
Where the name came from
The name is an homage to the American Royal, a livestock show, horse show, and rodeo that has been held annually in Kansas City since 1899, as well as the name of two former Negro league baseball teams that played in the early half of the 20th Centruy. .
In 1968, the team held a name-the-team contest that received over 17,000 entries. The winning entry came from Sanford Poite, a bridge engineer from Overland Park, Kansas. When asked about the name, he stated that it had nothing to do with royalty, and instead referred to Missouri’s livestock income. The name was voted on by the board with a 6-1 split, that became a unanimous vote after the name grew on team owner Ewing Kauffman.
The Royals have two major rivalries that fans are always excited to see.
Vs St. Louis Cardinals
The most prominent rivalry is with the Cardinals. These teams primarily compete due to geographic reasons. But it truly kicked off after the Royals defeated the Cardinals in the 1985 World Series. Part of this may have been caused by then Cardinals manager, Whitey Herzog being the former Royals manager from 1975-1979 before being fired after the team were eliminated from the 1979 playoffs.
Vs New York Yankees
From 1976 – 1980, the Royals faced teh New York Yankees four times in five years in the ALCS. The Yankees won in 1976-1978 while the Royals won in 1980. Both teams agreed that they were big rivals to one another during this time.
About Kauffman Stadium
Kauffman Stadium, known by fans as “The K”, is a famous baseball park in Kansas City, Missouri. The stadium is home to MLB’s Kansas City Royals and is part of the Truman Sports Complex alongside adjacent Arrowhead Stadium. The ballpark opened its doors as Royals Stadium in 1973. It was later named Kauffman Stadium, after Ewing Kauffman, the founder and owner of the franchise. The stadium had its record attendance on October 9, 1980 when 42,633 spectators witnessed Game 2 of the American League Championship Series (ALCS) vs the New York Yankees. But after its 2009 renovation, seating capacity is listed at 37,903 spectators.
Kauffman Stadium was built especially for baseball. It was unusual since, at the time, multisport ‘cookie-cutter’ stadiums were far more common. It was easier for a lot of stadium owners to build arenas that could be easily adjusted for different shows and events. But the decision to make Kauffman Stadium a baseball only venue placed it alongside Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles as one of the best examples of modernist stadium design. In fact, it’s the only ballpark in the American League to be named after a person and is one of only nine stadiums in MLB to not have a corporate-sponsored name.
It’s also the sixth-oldest stadium in the majors and has hosted the 1973 and 2012 MLB All-Star Games, as well as the Royals home games during the 1980, 1985, 2014, and 2015 World Series. And when it went under renovations between 2007 and 2009, it added fan amenities including a hall of fame area and other updates through the facility.
Despite being built for baseball only, the design borrowed style cues from multi-purpose stadiums of the time. The main stadium is primarily concrete with a smooth concrete facade. The seats wrap around the infield and end at hte foul poles, with smaller bleacher sections. The design means that fans have the best view of a baseball game no matter where their seats are located.
It’s also famous for its fountain and waterfall display, known as the Water Spectacular, located behind the right-field fence. It’s the largest privately funded fountain in the world at 322 feet. The feature is on display before and after games and between innings and is known for being constantly flowing.
The park’s best-known feature is the fountain and waterfall display (known as the Water Spectacular) behind the right-field fence. At 322 feet (98 m), it is the largest privately funded fountain in the world. The fountains are on display before and after the game and between innings, while the waterfalls are constantly flowing.
Starting in 2014, the Royals started placing a “W” on the Hall of Fame wall for every home win, similar to the Chicago Cubs tradition of hoisting a white flag with a blue “W” at Wrigley Field for every Cub home win.
Also, starting in the 2007 season, the Royals has a single red seat in the stadium amongst all the seats behind home plate to honor BUck O’Neil, who was a Kansas City Royals scout since 1988 and hte first African-American coach in MLB history. This seat is said to embody the spirit of Buck O’Neil and is given to one of several community nominees.
Finally, in the outfield concourse, visitors can find four statues. Three of the statues are located in right field and depict George Brett, Dick Howser, and Frank White. The fourth and final statue is located in left field and depicts Ewing Kauffman and his wife Muriel.
The franchise has received several accolades since the first time they took the field. These accolades include:
Two World Series Titles (1985, 2015)
Four AL Pennants (1980, 1985, 2014, 2015)
One Central Division Title (2015)
Six West Division Titles (1976, 1977, 1978, 1980, 1984, 1985)
One Wild Card Berth (2014)