The Kansas City Royals, to put it bluntly, have had a terrible season. Since committing to a full-scale rebuild in 2018, the Royals have not won more than 45 percent of their games in a season, having peaked last year during the past five season-stretch with 74 wins. Instead of improving in a more expected, linear fashion, the Royals will be finishing worse this year than last, as they currently have a 63-90 record. However, even for just a night, Royals fans will be cherishing their hard-fought 63rd win against the Seattle Mariners and they should, given the dearth of reasons to celebrate the franchise as of late.
Heading into the sixth inning of the Royals’ latest game against the Mariners, the Royals trailed 11-2, and seemed on track for their 91st loss, especially against a Seattle team with strong playoff hopes, despite the injury to young superstar Julio Rodriguez. However, the bats started to wake up in a big way, stringing together 11 runs in the bottom of the sixth, with eight of those scored with two outs in the inning.
According to ESPN Stats & Info, the Royals’ explosion that ended in a 13-12 victory broke an 820-game streak that saw a team that trailed by 9+ runs at some point in the game ending up on the losing end.
Going into the bottom of the 6th inning, the Royals trailed the Mariners, 11-2.
Kansas City then scored 11 runs in the frame and went on to win, 13-12.
Entering today, teams had lost 820 consecutive games when trailing by at least 9 runs. pic.twitter.com/yDseByDydZ
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) September 25, 2022
Tristin McKinstry ·
The rally began with second baseman Michael Massey’s two-run shot to right that chased Mariners starter Luis Castillo, he of the 2.85 ERA and 153 strikeouts in 139 innings pitched, out of the game. The Royals then proceeded to channel their 2015 championship energy, stringing together a productive fielder’s choice out, infield and bloop singles, and two doubles that allowed Kansas City to claim a lead they would not relinquish. The rally could have gone even longer, as the Royals’ eruption was put to an end by Hunter Dozier’s baserunning mistake when he tried to stretch a hit into a double.
The Mariners will be frustrated at the result, for sure, but in a long season, they could take comfort in the fact that a loss of such a crushing nature only counts as one on the standings. Nonetheless, Seattle will have its sights set on the postseason, as the 83-69 Mariners currently have a four-game lead over the 79-73 Baltimore Orioles. The Mariners’ pitching corps would have to lock in for the stretch run, however, because as the 63-90 Royals showed, there are no easy games in the Majors.