With a 10-4 win over the Seattle Mariners and a loss by the Minnesota Twins, the Kansas City Royals have clinched their first ever AL Central Title and their first division title since 1985. It was the longest drought for a division title in baseball, but that has now come to an end.
Kansas City came into Thursday with a magic number of two, but they were able to clinch because the Twins dropped their game to the Indians and the Royals took care of business against the Mariners.
The Royals have been in control of the AL Central all season long and it isn’t too much of a surprise that they were able to able to wrap up the division title. They were only challenged by the Twins in a down year in the Central and currently lead second place Minnesota by 11 games. Kansas City has led the AL Central everyday since June 8.
Manager Ned Yost has led the Royals to the playoffs for the second straight year after having undergone a 29-year playoff drought prior to 2014. The defending winners of the AL Pennant will be back in the Postseason once again.
The Royals got a great outing by Johnny Cueto who they acquired at the trade deadline. Cueto got his first win since August 15. He went seven innings giving up three runs on seven hits while striking out five and walking two.
Mike Moustakas had himself a great game as he homered and drove in three runs on the night. Alex Rios and Lorenzo Cain also drove in two runs while Alex Gordon homered in a multi hit game. Ben Zobrist added a 2-for-5 night with three runs scored in the division-clinching win.
Kansas City currently has the best record in the American League by two games over the Toronto Blue Jays with ten games left on their schedule. After wrapping up the division, grabbing the top seed in the AL playoffs could help them get back to their second straight World Series. With a playoff appearance set in stone, plan postseason baseball trips with Hipmunk.com. In addition to the cheapest Kansas City airfare for out-of-town Royals fans, Kansas City hotels at Hipmunk.com near the airport or ballpark can be booked to be the one-stop shop for traveling Royals supporters.