1969 Kansas City Royals season

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1969 Kansas City Royals
Major League affiliations
Location
Other information
Owner(s) Ewing Kauffman
Manager(s) Joe Gordon
Local television KMBC-TV
Local radio KMBZ
(Buddy Blattner, Denny Matthews
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The 1969 Kansas City Royals season was the Royals' inaugural season. The team finished fourth in the newly established American League West with a record of 69 wins and 93 losses.

Offseason[edit]

A franchise is born[edit]

The club's inception is connected to the Athletics franchise. On October 18, 1967, A.L. owners at last gave Charles O. Finley permission to move the Athletics to Oakland for the 1968 season. According to some reports, Joe Cronin promised Finley that he could move the team after the 1967 season as an incentive to sign the new lease with Municipal Stadium. The move came in spite of approval by voters in Jackson County, Missouri of a bond issue for a brand new baseball stadium (the eventual Kauffman Stadium) to be completed in 1973. When U.S. Senator Stuart Symington threatened to have baseball's antitrust exemption revoked, the owners responded with a hasty round of expansion. Kansas City was awarded an American League expansion team, the Royals. They were initially slated to begin play in 1971. However, Symington was not willing to have Kansas City wait three years for another team, and renewed his threat to have baseball's antitrust exemption revoked unless the teams began play in 1969. The owners complied.

Expansion draft[edit]

The 1968 Major League Baseball expansion draft for the Royals and the Seattle Pilots was held on October 15.

Player Former Team Pick
Roger Nelson[1] Baltimore Orioles 1st
Joe Foy Boston Red Sox 4th
Jim Rooker New York Yankees 6th
Joe Keough Oakland A’s 8th
Steve Jones Washington Senators 10th
Jon Warden Detroit Tigers 12th
Ellie Rodríguez New York Yankees 13th
Dave Morehead Boston Red Sox 15th
Mike Fiore Baltimore Orioles 17th
Bob Oliver Minnesota Twins 19th
Bill Butler Detroit Tigers 22nd
Steve Whitaker New York Yankees 23rd
Wally Bunker[2] Baltimore Orioles 25th
Paul Schaal[3] California Angels 27th
Dan Haynes Chicago White Sox 29th
Dick Drago[4] Detroit Tigers 31st
Pat Kelly Minnesota Twins 34th
Billy Harris Cleveland Indians 36th
Don O'Riley Oakland A’s 38th
Al Fitzmorris Chicago White Sox 40th
Moe Drabowsky Baltimore Orioles 42nd
Jackie Hernández Minnesota Twins 43rd
Mike Hedlund Cleveland Indians 45th
Tom Burgmeier California Angels 47th
Hoyt Wilhelm[5] Chicago White Sox 49th
Jerry Adair Boston Red Sox 51st
Jerry Cram Minnesota Twins 54th
Fran Healy Cleveland Indians 56th
Scott Northey Chicago White Sox 58th
Ike Brookens Washington Senators 60th

Other offseason transactions[edit]

Regular season[edit]

  • May 4, 1969: Bob Oliver became the first Royal to collect six hits in a nine-inning game.[9]

Opening Day starters[edit]

Season standings[edit]

AL West W L GB Pct.
Minnesota Twins 97 65 -- .599
Oakland Athletics 88 74 9.0 .543
California Angels 71 91 26.0 .438
Kansas City Royals 69 93 28.0 .426
Chicago White Sox 68 94 29.0 .420
Seattle Pilots 64 98 33.0 .395

Notable transactions[edit]

The first game[edit]

Scorecard[edit]

April 8, Municipal Stadium, Kansas City, Missouri

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Minnesota 0 1 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 3 12 1
Kansas City 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 4 14 0
W: Drabowsky (1-0)  L: Grzenda (0-1)  
HRs: Nettles (1)

Roster[edit]

1969 Kansas City Royals
Roster
Pitchers Catchers

Infielders

Outfielders Manager

Coaches

Player stats[edit]

Batting[edit]

Starters by position[edit]

Note: Pos = Position; G = Games played; AB = At bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting average; HR = Home runs; RBI = Runs batted in

Pos Player G AB H Avg. HR RBI
C Rodríguez, EllieEllie Rodríguez 95 267 63 .236 2 20
1B Fiore, MikeMike Fiore 107 339 93 .274 12 35
3B Foy, JoeJoe Foy 145 519 136 .262 11 71
SS Hernández, JackieJackie Hernández 145 504 112 .222 4 40
CF Oliver, BobBob Oliver 118 394 100 .254 13 43
RF Kelly, PatPat Kelly 112 417 110 .264 8 32

Other batters[edit]

Note: G = Games played; AB = At bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting average; HR = Home runs; RBI = Runs batted in

Player G AB H Avg. HR RBI
Kirkpatrick, EdEd Kirkpatrick 120 315 81 .257 14 49
Harrison, ChuckChuck Harrison 75 213 47 .221 3 18
Schaal, PaulPaul Schaal 61 205 54 .263 1 13
Keough, JoeJoe Keough 70 166 31 .187 0 7
Paepke, DennisDennis Paepke 12 27 3 .111 0 0
Harris, BillyBilly Harris 5 7 2 .286 0 0

Pitching[edit]

Starting pitchers[edit]

Note: G = Games pitched; IP = Innings pitched; W = Wins; L = Losses; ERA = Earned run average; SO = Strikeouts

Player G IP W L ERA SO
Bunker, WallyWally Bunker 35 222.2 12 11 3.23 130
Butler, BillBill Butler 34 193.2 9 10 3.90 156
Nelson, RogerRoger Nelson 29 193.1 7 13 3.31 82
Rooker, JimJim Rooker 28 158.1 4 16 3.75 108

Other pitchers[edit]

Note: G = Games pitched; IP = Innings pitched; W = Wins; L = Losses; ERA = Earned run average; SO = Strikeouts

Player G IP W L ERA SO
Drago, DickDick Drago 41 200.2 11 13 3.77 108
Hedlund, MikeMike Hedlund 34 125 3 6 3.24 74
Jones, SteveSteve Jones 20 44.2 2 3 4.23 31
Cram, JerryJerry Cram 5 16.2 0 1 3.24 10

Relief pitchers[edit]

Note: G = Games pitched; W = Wins; L = Losses; SV = Saves; ERA = Earned run average; SO = Strikeouts

Player G W L SV ERA SO
Drabowsky, MoeMoe Drabowsky 52 11 9 11 2.94 76
Burgmeier, TomTom Burgmeier 31 3 1 0 4.17 23
Morehead, DaveDave Morehead 21 2 3 0 5.73 32
O'Riley, DonDon O'Riley 18 1 1 1 6.94 10
Cisco, GalenGalen Cisco 15 1 1 1 3.63 18
Fitzmorris, AlAl Fitzmorris 7 1 1 2 4.22 3

Farm system[edit]

Level Team League Manager
AAA Omaha Royals American Association Jack McKeon
AA Elmira Pioneers Eastern League Harry Bright
A High Point-Thomasville Royals Carolina League Harry Malmberg
A Waterloo Hawks Midwest League Rollie Hemsley
Short-Season A Corning Royals New York-Penn League Buddy Peterson
Short-Season A Winnipeg Goldeyes Northern League Spider Jorgensen
Rookie Kingsport Royals Appalachian League Red Norwood

LEAGUE CHAMPIONS: Omaha

Elmira affiliation shared with San Diego Padres

Notes[edit]

References[edit]