Cardinals–Royals rivalry

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St. Louis Cardinals – Kansas City Royals
St Louis Cardinals Cap Insignia.svg  Kansas City Royals Insignia.svg
History
First meeting August 29, 1997
Location Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City, MO
Last meeting May 30, 2013
Location Busch Stadium, St. Louis, MO
Next meeting June 2, 2014
Location Busch Stadium, St. Louis, MO
Number of meetings 76
Regular season series Cardinals, 45-31
Largest victory Royals by 11 (August 30, 1997)
Current streak Royals, 1
Longest Cardinals win streak 7
Longest Royals win streak 4
Post-season history
1985 World Series     Royals, 4-3

The I-70 Series is a Major League Baseball rivalry between the St. Louis Cardinals of the National League and Kansas City Royals of the American League. This rivalry is so called because the two cities are located in the state of Missouri, whose nickname is the "Show Me State." They played each other for the first time in the 1985 World Series, which the Royals won in seven games, but which is perhaps best remembered for a controversial call from umpire Don Denkinger in game 6. Owing to their geographical proximity, the teams face each other every regular season in interleague play. This is also sometimes referred to as the I-70 Series.

Background[edit]

The Cardinals are one of Major League Baseball's original teams, having played in the National League in St. Louis since they were formed as the Brown Stockings in 1882. The Royals joined the majors in 1969 as one of the American League's first expansion teams. Because there was no interleague play until 1997, the only opportunity for the Cardinals and Royals to meet was in the World Series, which occurred in 1985. The two teams had gone through several periods of prolonged success (and several notable droughts) leading up to the 1985 World Series. The Cardinals fell on hard times in the 1970s after winning the 1964 World Series and the 1967 World Series and appearing in the 1968 World Series. The Kansas City Royals had become one of the best teams in baseball by the late 1970s, reaching the American League playoffs six times in nine years between 1976 and 1984, including the 1980 World Series. After several down years, the Cardinals emerged as a pennant contender in the early 1980s, winning the 1982 World Series.

1985 World Series[edit]

The first official meeting between the Cardinals and Royals was in the 1985 World Series. This marked only the second time in baseball history that two teams from the state of Missouri met in the World Series. The first time was in 1944, when the Cardinals played the St. Louis Browns, who became the Baltimore Orioles after they relocated in 1954. That series also marked the last time to date that a World Series was held entirely in one ballpark, as the Cardinals and Browns shared a stadium at the time.

The Cardinals won the National League East division by three games over the New York Mets and then defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers four games to two in the National League Championship Series. The Royals won the American League West division by one game over the California Angels and then defeated the Toronto Blue Jays four games to three in the American League Championship Series.

The Royals lost the first two games at home and were on the verge of elimination, down 1-0 in the bottom of the 9th in game 6, when umpire Don Denkinger made a controversial call, ruling runner Jorge Orta safe at first. Orta was later thrown out at third on a botched sacrifice attempt and did not score. The Royals would go on to win the game 2-1 in the bottom of the 9th following the put-out of Orta (the only out recorded in the inning). The Royals then went on to win game 7 the following day 11-0 for their first and thus far only World Series title. The Royals became the first team ever to win the World Series after dropping games 1 and 2 at home. This also marks the last playoff appearance to date for the Royals.

Interleague Play[edit]

Interleague play in 1997 allowed the I-70 Series to be revived in nonexhibition games. The first few seasons of the series were rather even, with the Cardinals holding a slight advantage with a 14–13 record through the 2003 season. Through the 2012 season, the Cardinals held the series advantage 45–34. The Royals took two out of three from the Cardinals in 2010 behind victories from starting pitchers Zack Greinke and Bruce Chen. In 2011, the Cardinals won four of the six matchups, three of them in the eighth inning or later. The last four games in the series were one-run games. In 2012, the Cardinals again won four of the six games, on the strength of a three-game sweep in Kansas City over June 22–24.

External links[edit]

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  • [8]"There's always a festive air when the St. Louis Cardinals come to Kauffman Stadium to renew the old Missouri rivalry with the Royals."

Bibliography[edit]

  • Spivak, Jeff. Crowning the Kansas City Royals: Remembering the 1985 World Series Champs. Sports Publishing LLC. ISBN 1582618267.