2017 Kansas City Royals
2017 Kansas City Royals / Franchise: Kansas City Royals / BR Team Page
Managed by Ned Yost
History, Comments, Contributions
The 2017 Kansas City Royals had a terrible month of April, starting the year with a record of 7-16, worst in the major leagues, and losing their last nine games of the month. They were particularly bad on the road, going 2-11 away from Kauffman Stadium. But just as everyone was writing them off, they began to play better, moving to within four games of the division lead in a wide open AL Central by mid-June. Having been as many as ten games below .500 at one point, they returned to the magic mark for the first time since April on June 23rd, thanks to a dramatic 5-4 win over the Toronto Blue Jays: trailing 4-1 in the bottom of the 9th, they rallied for four runs, capped by a two-run double by Whit Merrifield, for their 10th win in 12 games.
Now fully back in the postseason race, the Royals had another nice winning streak after the All-Star Game, winning 9 in a row. Widely expected to be sellers at the trading deadline when the season began, with P Jason Vargas often mentioned as a prime target, they were buyers instead, pulling off a big trade with the San Diego Padres on July 24th to land them Ps Ryan Buchter, Trevor Cahill and Brandon Maurer, in exchange for underperforming veteran Travis Wood, the injured Matt Strahm, and one youngster, Esteury Ruiz. For his part, Vargas was having an All-Star season and the team's 9th straight win on July 28th improved his record to 13-4. In that same game, 3B Mike Moustakas, another All-Star, reached the 30-homer mark for the first time of his career and was threatening the team record of 36 set by Steve Balboni in 1985.
On August 28th, the Royals extended a scoreless streak to 43 innings when they were shut out by the Tampa Bay Rays, 12-0. The shutout followed losses of 4-0, 4-0 and 12-0 in a series sweep by the Cleveland Indians on August 25-27, after being held scoreless from the 2nd inning on in 3-2 loss to the Colorado Rockies on August 24th. The streak was 5 shy of the major league record and had coincided with the Royals losing five full game on the Indians in the AL Central standings. The scoreless streak ended at 45 innings on August 29th when Whit Merrifield homered with two outs in the 3rd inning of a 6-2 win over the Rays. Still, the Royals went only 10-18 in August, and saw their deficit in the division increase form 2 games to 11.
Awards and Honors
- All-Stars: Mike Moustakas, Salvador Perez and Jason Vargas
- AL Gold Glove: Alex Gordon (LF) and Eric Hosmer (1B)
- AL Silver Slugger Award: Eric Hosmer (1B)
- AL Comeback Player of the Year Award: Mike Moustakas
- Bob Nightengale: "Royals know the deal: Win now, or say goodbye", mlb.com, February 26, 2017. 
- Bob Nightengale: "Pirates and Royals: Off the trade block, ready to shake up pennant races", USA Today Sports, July 25, 2017. 
- Jorge L. Ortiz: "Royals making most of their last chance together", USA Today Sports, June 15, 2017.