1998 Kansas City Royals season

1998 Kansas City Royals
Major League affiliations
Other information
Owner(s) David Glass
General manager(s) Herk Robinson
Manager(s) Tony Muser
Local television KMBC-TV
Fox Sports Rocky Mountain
(Paul Splittorff, Bob Davis)
Local radio WKBZ
(Denny Matthews, Fred White)
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The 1998 Kansas City Royals season was a season in American baseball. It involved the Royals finishing 3rd in the American League Central with a record of 72 wins and 89 losses.


  • November 18, 1997: Yamil Benitez was drafted by the Arizona Diamondbacks from the Kansas City Royals as the 19th pick in the 1997 expansion draft.[1]
  • January 20, 1998: Terry Pendleton was signed as a Free Agent with the Kansas City Royals.[2]
  • January 20, 1998: Lee Smith signed as a Free Agent with the Kansas City Royals.[3]
  • March 17, 1998: Ernie Young was purchased by the Kansas City Royals from the Oakland Athletics.[4]

Regular season

Before the 1998 regular season began, two new teams—the Arizona Diamondbacks and Tampa Bay Devil Rays—were added by Major League Baseball. This resulted in the American League and National League having fifteen teams. However, in order for MLB officials to continue primarily intraleague play, both leagues would need to carry a number of teams that was divisible by two, so the decision was made to move one club from the AL Central to the NL Central.

This realignment was widely considered to have great financial benefit to the club moving. However, to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest, Commissioner (then club owner) Bud Selig decided another team should have the first chance to switch leagues. The choice was offered to the Kansas City Royals, who ultimately decided to stay in the American League and bypassing the opportunity to build a full-time rivalry with the St. Louis Cardinals.[5] The choice then fell to the Brewers, who, on November 6, 1997, elected to move to the National League. Had the Brewers elected not to move to the National League, the Minnesota Twins would have been offered the opportunity to switch leagues.[6]

Season standings

AL Central W L Pct. GB Home Road
Cleveland Indians 8973 0.549 46–35 43–38
Chicago White Sox 8082 0.494 9 44–37 36–45
Kansas City Royals 7289 0.447 16½ 29–51 43–38
Minnesota Twins 7092 0.432 19 35–46 35–46
Detroit Tigers 6597 0.401 24 32–49 33–48

Record vs. opponents

1998 American League Records

Anaheim 5–66–55–64–78–36–56–56–55–79–36–55–74–710–6
Baltimore 6–56–62–95–610–15–67–33–98–36–55–76–55–75–11
Boston 5–66–65–68–35–58–35–65–79–27–49–36–55–79–7
Chicago 6–59–26–56–66–68–46–64–74–74–75–65–64–6–17–9
Cleveland 7–46–53–86–69–38–46–64–73–89–27–34–77–410–6
Detroit 3–81–105–56–63–96–68–43–87–43–85–63–85–67–9
Kansas City 5–66–53–84–84–86–67–50–107–44–68–33–86–59–7
Minnesota 5–63–76–56–66–64–85–74–74–72–97–47–44–77–9
New York 5–69–37–57–47–48–310–07–48–38–311–18–36–613–3
Oakland 7–53–82–97–48–34–74–77–43–85–75–66–65–68–8
Seattle 3–95–64–77–42–98–36–49–23–87–56–55–74–77–9
Tampa Bay 5–67–53–96–53–76–53–84–71–116–55–64–75–75–11
Texas 7–55–65–66–57–48–38–34–73–86–67–57–47–48–8
Toronto 7–47–57–56–4–14–76–55–67–46–66–57–47–54–79–7


1998 Kansas City Royals
Pitchers Catchers



Other batters



Player stats

Starters by position

Note: G = Games played; AB = At bats; H = Hits; R = Runs; HR = Home runs; RBI = Runs batted in; Avg. = Batting average; Slg. = Slugging average; SB = Stolen bases

Pos. Player G AB R H HR RBI Avg. Slg. SB
CMike Sweeney922823273835.259.4082
1BJeff King131486831282493.263.45110
2BJosé Offerman158607102191766.315.43845
3BDean Palmer1525728415934119.278.5108
SSMendy López742061850115.243.3255
LFJeff Conine933093079843.256.4173
CFJohnny Damon1616421041781866.277.43926
RFLarry Sutton1113102976542.245.3523
DHHal Morris12747250146140.309.3811


Other batters

Player G AB H Avg. HR RBI

Starting pitchers

Player G IP W L ERA SO

Other pitchers

Player G IP W L ERA
Relief pitchers
Player G W L SV ERA SO

Farm system

Level Team League Manager
AAA Omaha Royals Pacific Coast League Ron Johnson
AA Wichita Wranglers Texas League John Mizerock
A Wilmington Blue Rocks Carolina League Darrell Evans, Kevin Long and Brian Poldberg
A Lansing Lugnuts Midwest League Bob Herold
A-Short Season Spokane Indians Northwest League Jeff Garber
Rookie GCL Royals Gulf Coast League Andre David



  1. https://www.baseball-reference.com/b/benitya01.shtml
  2. Terry Pendleton Statistics Baseball-Reference.com
  3. Lee Smith Statistics Baseball-Reference.com
  4. https://www.baseball-reference.com/y/younger02.shtml
  5. "Brewers switch leagues, join Reds in NL Central". The Kentucky Post (Associated Press). E. W. Scripps Company. November 6, 1997. Archived from the original on May 5, 2005.
  6. Pappas, Doug, "News Briefs: Fall 1997" Archived July 27, 2008, at the Wayback Machine., Outside the Lines, Fall 1997.
  7. https://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/SEA/1998.shtml
  8. Johnson, Lloyd, and Wolff, Miles, ed., The Encyclopedia of Minor League Baseball, 3rd edition. Durham, North Carolina: Baseball America, 2007
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