Gulf Coast League Royals

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The Gulf Coast League (GCL) Royals was the name of an American minor league baseball franchise in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League from 1971–1983 and 1985–2002.

Owned and operated by the Kansas City Royals of Major League Baseball, the GCL club played games at Florida-based minor league and spring training facilities in Sarasota (through 1987), "Baseball City" in Davenport (1988–1992; 1999–2002), Lee County (1993–1995) and Fort Myers (1996–1998).

From 1979–1981, the Royals operated two GCL teams — Royals Blue and Royals Gold — to accommodate a surplus of teenaged players. In 1974, Kansas City also fielded a separate Royals Academy Gulf Coast League team for members of its experimental Baseball Academy. The Academy team played alongside the GCL Royals; it finished 35–16 in the GCL that season, 4½ games ahead of the 29–19 GCL Royals, but the Royals Academy lost the league pennant by percentage points to the GCL Cubs.

The GCL Royals won five Gulf Coast League championships: 1971; 1980 (Blue); 1981 (Gold); 1992; 1995.

In 2003, when the Royals moved their spring training operations to Surprise, Arizona, they simultaneously transferred their Rookie-level affiliate to the Arizona League.

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