We would like to welcome you to a new series here at Royals Blue. We will continue to post segments breaking down the 300 best players to ever play for Kansas City. There will be some familiar names, some not so familiar, and probably a few surprises along the way.
These are the Top 300 Kansas City Royals Players ranked in descending order. Each player's ranking is based on the Modified Production Index Formula (MPIF). Position players and pitchers, respectively, have a formula that is used to rank their overall contribution to the Kansas City Baseball Franchise in their Royals' career. The position player and pitching formula are located HERE.
The following players, ranked from #210 to 181, have biographical and statistical information about their tenure in Kansas City.
RANK #210 – GERALD PERRY (#17) – Designated Hitter (1990)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 572.76
279th Royals Player in Franchise History
Gerald Perry was traded by the Atlanta Braves to the Kansas City Royals for pitchers Charlie Leibrandt and Rick Luecken in 1989. Perry split time with the Royals between first base and designated hitter. He hit .254 for the season with eight home runs. He split time at first base with George Brett and he platooned at DH with Brett and Danny Tartabull. His best game came on May 8, 1990 when he hit a grand slam off of Texas’ Nolan Ryan in the first inning to help give the Royals a 10-5 win. Perry was granted free agency at the end of the season and he signed with the St. Louis Cardinals after the 1990 season. Perry made 513 plate appearances over 133 games with Kansas City.
RANK #209 – TERRENCE LONG (#3) – Left Field (2005)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 575.12
597th Royals Player in Franchise History (along with Mark Teahen)
Terrence Long was traded to the Kansas City Royals, along with Dennis Tankersley and cash, for Ryan Bukvich and Darrell May in 2004. He was the opening day left fielder for the Royals in 2005. He hit .279 for the season with six home runs. His best game came on June 11, 2005 in a 8-5 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks, when he went 3-4 with three RBIs. His contract was not renewed and he signed a contract with the Cincinnati Reds in 2006. Long played 794 innings that season for the Kansas City Royals over 137 games.
RANK #208 – JASON VARGAS (#51) – Starting Pitcher (2014-2015)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 576.65
779th Royals Player in Franchise History
Jason Vargas signed as a free agent with the Kansas City Royals after playing with the Los Angeles Angels. Vargas signed for a five-year deal after the departure of Ervin Santana. Vargas joined Danny Duffy as the only left handers in the rotation. He made an immediate impact, pitching 2.42 in the month of April. He was considered to have the best changeup in the major leagues for a left-hander. On July 8, after pitching against Tampa Bay, Vargas was placed on the disabled list because of an emergency appendectomy. When he returned, he had his best game on August 13 when he pitched a 3-0 complete game shutout of the Oakland Athletics. Vargas struggled in September, but was able to help the Royals make their first playoff berth in 29 years. During the playoffs, Vargas pitched brilliantly with a 2.38 ERA and a victory against the Baltimore Orioles in the ALCS. Unfortunately, Vargas’ performance in the World Series was not as successful, only pitching four innings and giving up three earned runs against the San Francisco Giants. During the beginning of the 2015 season, Vargas had a 5-2 record despite having a 3.98 ERA. Unfortunately, injuries took its toll and an elbow injury ended his season. Vargas is currently still on the Kansas City Royals, having pitched 230 innings. He will miss the entire 2016 season due to his elbow injury.
RANK #207 – BOB BOONE (#8) – Catcher (1989-1990)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 578.28
269th Royals Player in Franchise History
Former all-star veteran catcher Bob Boone signed with the Kansas City Royals in 1988 after playing with the California Angels for seven years. His father, Ray Boone, had briefly played for the old Kansas City Athletics in 1959. Boone was the Royals’ opening day catcher and primary catcher for the season. He had a respectable .274 batting average for the season. Boone led the American League in games as a catcher that season. He was also first in the league in putouts by a catcher, second in assists, first in pickoffs. His defensive prowess earned him his seventh Gold Glove award as a catcher. He became the first Royals catcher ever to earn such an honor. His best offensive game came on June 28, 1989 in a 12-7 win over the Seattle Mariners in which Boone went 2-4 with four RBIs. Unfortunately, Boone suffered a broken finger 1990 which shortened his season and led to his retirement from baseball. Boone would return to Kansas City as its manager between 1995 and 1997. He played in 171 games and appeared as catcher in 1,417 innings.
RANK #206 – RYAN SHEALY (#43) – First Base (2006-2008)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 592.27
636th Royals Player in Franchise History
In July of 2006, the Colorado Rockies traded Ryan Shealy was to the Kansas City Royals, along with Scott Dohmann, for Jeremy Affeldt and Denny Bautista. He replaced first baseman Doug Mientkiewicz after he had a season-ending injury. Shealy made an immediate impact, hitting .280 with seven home runs. On September 16, 2006, Shealy hit his first grand slam against the Seattle Mariners. He was the opening day first baseman in 2007, but performed poorly, only hitting .221 with three home runs. Shealy was demoted to AAA Omaha at the end of June. He only played a few games when brought up in September of 2008. Shealy was released in 2009 and picked up by the Tampa Bay Rays. He hit .260 with the Royals in 123 games and logged 1,043 innings at first base.
RANK #205 – SCOTT PODSEDNIK (#22) – Left Field (2010)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 594.26
702nd Royals Player in Franchise History (along with Chris Getz and Jason Kendall)
Scott Podsednik signed with the Kansas City Royals as a free agent in 2010 after playing for the Chicago White Sox. Podsednik became the starting left fielder for the Kansas City Royals. He had a .310 batting average with 30 stolen bases and five home runs. His best game came on May 6, 2010 against the Texas Rangers. Podsednik went 2-4 with a home run, two stolen bases and four RBIs. The Royals, however, decided to trade Podsednik in late July to the Los Angeles Dodgers for pitcher Lucas May and a minor league player after playing 806 1/3 innings in left field over 95 games.
RANK #204 – MIKE FIORE (#19) – First Base (1969-1970)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 596.91
21st Royals Player in Franchise History
Mike Fiore was drafted by the Kansas City Royals from the Baltimore Orioles in the 1968 Expansion Draft. Although not in the opening day lineup, Fiore became the primary first baseman for the Royals in their first season. He hit .274 with 12 home runs in 1969. On April 13, 1969, in the first game of a doubleheader, Fiore became the first Royals player to hit a homerun. The shot was hit off of Oakland Athletics pitcher Blue Moon Odom. By 1970, Bob Oliver became the Royals’ choice at first base, so Fiore was traded in May to the Boston Red Sox for infielder Tommy Matchick. Fiore ended his Royals career batting .258 with 12 home runs, playing 784 1/3 innings at first base.
RANK #203 – LOUIS COLEMAN (#31) – Middle Relief Pitcher (2011-2015)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 599.04
732nd Royals Player in Franchise History
Louis Coleman was drafted by the Kansas City Royals in 2009. He made his major league debut on April 21, 2011. Coleman had an outstanding season in 2011, pitching a 2.87 ERA with 64 strikeouts in 59 2/3 innings pitched. In 2012, he continued to have success with 65 strikeouts in 51 innings pitched. Coleman began the 2013 season in the minor leagues, but was brought back to Kansas City in late May. Once he was back with the Royals, relief appearances were remarkable, earning a 3-0 record with only an ERA of 0.61 in 29 2/3 innings pitched. Coleman could not repeat the success in the 2014 season. Despite making the roster on opening day, Coleman’s performance was disappointing. By the end of May, he had a 6.27 ERA and was sent down to AAA Omaha. He was brought back briefly between June and August, but his command was not there. Coleman returned to the bullpen in September and pitched 2.38 ERA in 11 games, but did not make the post-season roster. In 2015, he was recalled in September and made four appearances. After the season, he was released by the Royals and signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Coleman made 152 pitching appearances with Kansas City.
RANK #202 – GREGG ZAUN (#44) – Catcher (2000-2001)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 599.69
478th Royals Player in Franchise History
Gregg Zaun was sent to the Kansas City Royals by the Detroit Tigers for future considerations. He is the nephew of long-time catcher Rick Dempsey of the Baltimore Orioles. Zaun hit .274 in his first year with the Royals, with seven home runs in 83 appearances. His best game came on July 22, 2000 in an 8-5 win over the Detroit Tigers, hitting 2-5 with three RBIs and a double. Zaun, however, lost his spot on the roster in 2002 to newly acquired Hector Ortiz and A.J. Hinch. He came up in July of 2002 after injuries to Ortiz and the demotion of Hinch. Zaun batted an astounding .320. Zaun became a free agent at the end of the season and signed with the Houston Astros. Zaun hit .290 in his time with the Royals.
RANK #201 – HAL MORRIS (#23) – Utility Player (1998)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 603.32
434th Royals Player in Franchise History
Hal Morris signed as a free agent to the Kansas City Royals in 1997 after playing for the Cincinnati Reds. He played left field on opening day in 1998, but split his time almost evenly between first base, left field and designated hitter throughout the season. He hit .309 over 521 plate appearances for the season, but only had one home run and 40 RBIs. His best game, playing as designated hitter, was on April 30, 1998 in a 7-4 over the Toronto Blue Jays. Morris hit 2-5 with three RBIs and a double. He did not re-sign with the Royals at the conclusion of the season and reunited with the Cincinnati Reds in 1999.
RANK #200 – JACKIE HERNANDEZ (#24) – Shortstop (1969-1970)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 604.07
1st Royals Player in Franchise History (along with Jerry Adair, Wally Bunker, Joe Foy, Chuck Harrison, Ed Kirkpatrick, Bob Oliver, Lou Piniella, and Ellie Rodriguez)
Jackie Hernandez was the first shortstop in Royals history. He was acquired by the Royals in the 1968 Expansion Draft. In his first season with the Royals, he hit only a .222 batting average while starting in 139 games at shortstop. His best game came on May 3, 1969 when Hernandez hit his first home run for Kansas City and drove in three RBIs. By 1970, Hernandez split time with Tom Matchick and Rich Severson at shortstop, batting .231 average. At the end of the 1970 season, Hernandez was traded, along with pitcher Bob Johnson and catcher Jim Campanis for Freddie Patek, Bruce Dal Canton and Jerry May of the Pittsburgh Pirates. Hernandez played 1,819 innings at shortstop over 228 games with Kansas City.
RANK #199 – NEIFI PEREZ (#8) – Shortstop (2001-2002)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 611.72
510th Royals Player in Franchise History
Neifi Perez was involved in one of the most hated trades in Royals history. He was traded by the Colorado Rockies for all-star Jermaine Dye. At the same time, star shortstop Rey Sanchez was traded to the Atlanta Braves, making room for Perez. Perez had won the Gold Glove in the National League the previous year, but only hit .241 with the Royals in the latter half of the 2001 season. He became the everyday shortstop in 2002, but his numbers languished in all categories. He only hit .236 for the season with three home runs. He also had a strained relationship with manager Tony Pena. He even refused to play in a late-season game despite being requested to by the manager. He was released by the Royals at the end of the season and claimed off waivers by the San Francisco Giants. Perez played 1,605 1/3 innings at shortstop over 194 games.
RANK #198 – TONY PENA, JR. (#1) – Shortstop (2007-2009)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 612.03
645th Royals Player in Franchise History
Tony Pena, Jr., son of catcher-great and former Royals Manager Tony Pena, Sr., was traded to the Kansas City Royals for a minor league player in 2007. Pena immediately became the everyday shortstop for the Royals, starting in 145 games in his first season. On opening day, Pena hit two triples in a 7-1 victory over the Boston Red Sox. He became only the sixth player ever to accomplish this feat on opening day. Pena hit .267 in his first season with the Royals. His best game came July 8, 2007 in a 12-4 victory over the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. Pena went 3-5 with three doubles and four RBIs. In 2008, however, Pena was overshadowed by rookie Mike Aviles who was hitting .325 with 10 home runs. Pena was moved to a backup role and his batting average dropped to .165. On July 21, 2008, Pena was placed in a pitching situation against the Detroit Tigers, making one strikeout of Ivan Rodriguez. His 2009 season did not fare much better in terms of offensive performance and Pena was designated for assignment by mid-July. He had a .228 career batting average for the Royals and is 10th all-time for innings played at shortstop with 2,031 2/3 innings over 287 games.
RANK #197 – SCOTT SERVICE (#48) – Middle Relief Pitcher (1997-1999)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 613.03
430th Royals Player in Franchise History
In mid-July of 1997, Scott Service was traded to the Kansas City Royals, along with Hector Carrasco, by the Cincinnati Red in exchange for Jon Nunnally and Chris Stynes. Service had limited time with the Royals in his first half-season with the Royals, splitting time with Kansas City and AAA Omaha. In 1998, Service became a major component of the Royals bullpen, pitching in 73 games with a 3.48 ERA and a 6-4 record. Service fanned 95 strikeouts in 82 2/3 innings. His best game came on August 12, 1998 when Service earned the win in three innings of relief against the Boston Red Sox. In this game, he had five strikeouts and did not have any earned runs. He continued to be a major part of the bullpen in 1999, pitching 75 1/3 innings in 68 games. However, his ERA shot up to 6.09 and his strikeout rate dropped by one-third. Service was released by the Royals at the conclusion of the 1999 season and was picked up by the Oakland Athletics. He had a 4.73 ERA with the Royals and a career record of 11-12 over 153 appearances.
RANK #196 – NORI AOKI (#23) – Right Field (2014)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 620.13
777th Royals Player in Franchise History
Norichika Aoki was traded to the Kansas City Royals by the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for pitcher Will Smith. Aoki had played in the Japanese League and is one of only four players ever to have over 200 hits in a single season in Japan. Nori was picked up by the Milwaukee Brewers and played there for two seasons before coming to Kansas City. Aoki brought speed and a consistent bat to the Royals. He was known for his unorthodox style of slap-hitting and was a successful lead-off runner for the Royals. Aoki was an excellent fielder who won two Gold Gloves in Japan. From May 10 to the end of the season, Aoki set a club record for the most innings, 673, without an error in the outfield. On August 5, 2014, Aoki hit his first career grand slam against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Between September 15 and 19, Aoki broke George Brett’s record by successfully reaching base 13 straight plate appearances in a three-game series with the Chicago White Sox. His skills in the outfield helped contribute to the Royals having the best defensive team in major league baseball. Aoki helped the Royals make their first playoff appearance in 29 years. His performance in the post-season was lackluster with a .195 batting average. However, his is defence in right field was outstanding. He hit .285 with 17 stolen bases for the season. After just one season with the Royals, Aoki signed with the San Francisco Giants as a free agent. He logged 937 1/3 innings in right field.
RANK #195 – KEITH MILLER (#16) – Second Base (1992-1995)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 622.12
323rd Royals Player in Franchise History
Keith Miller was traded to the Kansas City Royals, along with Kevin McReynolds, by the New York Mets for pitcher Bret Saberhagen and utility player Bill Pecota. The trade outraged many Royals fans because they did not want to see the departure of Saberhagen from Kansas City. Miller filled the void left by the departing Terry Shumpert at second base. His offense was quite an improvement, hitting .284 with four home runs and 16 stolen bases. It was the best season of his career. He earned the name “pigpen” by his teammates for his hustle on the field. His best game came on June 8, 1992 in a 9-6 victory over the Minnesota Twins, hitting 4-4 with a home run and four RBIs. With the acquisition of Jose Lind in 1993, Miller was used as a utility player, only playing in 37 games and batting only .167. He injured himself on opening day and was placed on the disabled list for much of April. Miller only played 14 games in 1994 and 1995 combined. He would be released in mid-May of 1995. He hit .258 with the Royals.
RANK #194 – GREG PRYOR (#4) – Third Base (1982-1986)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 623.22
177th Royals Player in Franchise History
Greg Pryor was traded to the Kansas City Royals by the Chicago White Sox in exchange for Jeff Schattinger. Pryor began his career as an infield utility player. He hit .270 in his first season with the Royals in 73 appearances. His best game came on May 12, 1982 in a 10-7 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers when he went 3-3 with a walk, a double and three RBIs. Pryor slumped in 1983 hitting only .217 for Kansas City. However, in 1984, George Brett began the season injured and Greg Pryor was picked to be the everyday third baseman and the first player other than Brett to start at third base on opening day since 1975. Pryor hit .263 for the season and returned to his utility duties upon Brett’s return. The 1985 and 1986 seasons did not go well for Pryor. He only hit .195 over the two seasons. He did make appearances in the 1984 ALCS and the 1985 World Series. Pryor was released by the Royals in 1987 and he retired from major league baseball. He is currently 10th all-time in innings played at third base with 1,519 1/3 innings over 390 games played.
RANK #193 – KIRK GIBSON (#30) – Left Field (1991)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 624.93
300th Royals Player in Franchise History
Veteran Kirk Gibson signed with the Royals as a free agent after playing with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Although he was the opening day designated hitter, Gibson primarily played left field. Despite only hitting .236, Gibson hit 16 home runs, had 18 stolen bases and 55 RBIs. On June 19, 1991, Gibson hit a grand slam home run against the Texas Rangers. He played a quarter of his games as a designated hitter for the Royals. Otherwise, he logged 759 1/3 innings in left field for the Royals. At the conclusion of the 1991 season, Gibson was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates for pitcher Neal Heaton.
RANK #192 – DAN REICHERT (#41) – Middle Relief Pitcher (1999-2002)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 626.34
481st Royals Player in Franchise History
Dan Reichert was drafted by the Kansas City Royals in 1997. He made his major league debut on July 16, 1999. Reichert only made eight starts in 1999 with a very high 9.08 ERA. He returned in 2000, splitting his time as a starter and relief pitcher. His ERA improved to 4.70 and his record was 8-10. His best game came on July 21, 2000 in a complete game shutout of the Detroit Tigers by the score of 4-0. Over the next two seasons, he split his time with 25 starts in 57 appearances. His ERA rose above 5.00 over the 2001 and 2002 seasons. He was released by the Royals and claimed off waivers by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. He ended his Royals career with a 5.53 ERA in 379 innings pitched and a 21-25 record.
RANK #191 – JON NUNNALLY (#22) – Right Field (1995-1997)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 626.97
363rd Royals Player in Franchise History
Jon Nunnally was selected in the Rule 5 Draft by the Kansas City Royals from the Cleveland Indians in 1994. Nunnally hit .244 in his first season with the Royals with 14 home runs. In his first major league at bat on April 29, 1995 against the Yankees, Nunnally became only the 70th player to hit a homerun in his first major league at bat, accomplishing it in the leadoff spot in the bottom of the first inning. His best game came on June 8, 1995 against the Texas Rangers. Nunnally went 3-4 with a homerun and three RBIs. Over the next two seasons, Nunnally played the majority of his time at AAA Omaha with only brief appearances in Kansas City. In July of 1997, Nunnally was traded, along with Chris Stynes, to the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for Scott Service and Hector Carrasco. He finished his Royals career with a .237 batting average and 20 home runs in 167 games played.
RANK #190 – DAVE MCCARTY (#6) – First Base (2000-2002)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 631.98
481st Royals Player in Franchise History
The Oakland Athletics sold the contract of Dave McCarty in 2000. His first season with the Kansas City Royals, McCarty played a career-high 103 games, primarily as a first baseman or pinch hitter. He hit .278 with 12 home runs. On July 19, McCarty hit a grand slam home run off of Chuck Finley of the Cleveland Indians. In 2001, McCarty became a backup to Mike Sweeney at first base, hitting a .250 batting average with seven home runs. Unfortunately, McCarty took a big downturn in 2002 when he went 3 for 32 at the plate. The Royals released McCarty in mid-May and his contract was picked up by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. He was a career .255 hitter over 214 games played with the Royals.
RANK #189 – GAIL HOPKINS (#18) – First Base (1971-1973)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 635.92
54th Royals Player in Franchise History
Gail Hopkins, along with minor league player John Matias, were traded to the Kansas City Royals in 1970 from the Chicago White Sox for Pat Kelly and Don O’Riley. Although playing more innings at first base than anyone else, Hopkins split time with Bob Oliver and Chuck Harrison. He had a .278 batting average with nine home runs in his first season with the Royals. His best game came May 9, 1971 in a 6-2 win over the Detroit Tigers when he 2-5 with a triple, a home run and four RBIs. In 1972, the Royals acquired John Mayberry, which greatly reduced Hopkins’ playing time. Most of his appearances in that season were as a pinch hitter. With the new rule changes to the American League, Hopkins found more playing time as designated hitter in 1973. His average improved to .246. He was released after the 1973 season and went on to play one more major league season with the Los Angeles Dodgers before retiring. Hopkins played a total of 230 games with Kansas City.
RANK #188 – JOE VITIELLO (#32) – Designated Hitter (1995-1999)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 637.40
367th Royals Player in Franchise History
Joe Vitiello was a first round draft pick by the Kansas City Royals in 1991. He made his major league debut on April 29, 1995. Between 1995 and 1996, Vitiello split his time in Kansas City and AAA Omaha, despite being the opening day designated hitter. During those two seasons, he only batted .245. In 1996, he again was on the opening day roster, but the Royals decided to give him more fielding duties as an outfielder. But by 1998, he spent the majority of his time in the minor leagues with only a few games in Kansas City. He was granted free agency in 1999 and signed with the San Diego Padres. Vitiello is 13th all-time in Kansas City with 440 plate appearances as a designated hitter in 205 games played.
RANK #187 – LUIS ALICEA (#12) – Second Base (2001-2002)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 640.41
500th Royals Player in Franchise History
Luis Alicea signed as a free agent to the Kansas City Royals in 2001 after playing with the Texas Rangers. The veteran primarily played second base and third base. He received a lot of playing time in 2001 at second base for the injured Carlos Febles, logging over 500 innings in the position. He hit a respectable .274 batting average over the course of his first season in Kansas City with four home runs and eight stolen bases. However, by 2002, his offensive output dropped to .228 batting average. Alicea retired after the 2002 season having played in 99 career games at second base with the Royals.
RANK #186 – RENIE MARTIN (#27) – Middle Relief Pitcher (1979-1981)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 649.43
137th Royals Player in Franchise History
Renie Martin was drafted by the Royals in 1977. He made his major league debut on May 9, 1979. Martin pitched 34 2/3 innings in 25 appearances in 1979 with a lofty ERA of 5.19. In 1980, the Royals took a chance and made him a starter in May. From May to the middle of July, Martin had a 4.60 ERA in 15 starts with a 7-6 record. He was moved back to the bullpen until September when he was placed in the starting rotation once again. His best game came on September 18, 1980 in a crucial playoff race matchup with the California Angels. Martin pitched eight innings with five strikeouts and only one earned run in a 5-2 win over the Angels. He had three relief appearances in the 1980 World Series against the Philadelphia Phillies and pitched 9 2/3 innings, only giving up three earned runs. In 1981, Martin had a fantastic start in a relief role, pitching in 29 games with a 2.77 ERA during the shortened strike season. Martin was traded, along with Craig Chamberlain, Atlee Hammaker and Brad Wellman to the San Francisco Giants for pitchers Bob Tufts and Vida Blue. Martin finished his Royals career with a 4.08 ERA in 233 2/3 innings.
RANK #185 – JIM COLBORN (#48) – Starting Pitcher (1977-1978)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 649.61
119th Royals Player in Franchise History
In 1977, Jim Colborn was traded by the Milwaukee Brewers, along with Darrell Porter, to the Kansas City Royals for Jim Wohlford, Jamie Quirk and Bob McClure. Colborn was placed in the starting rotation alongside Dennis Leonard, Paul Splittorff and Andy Hassler. Colborn had a 3.62 ERA with 103 strikeouts over 239 innings pitched. His record of 18-14 was second only to Leonard. On May 14, 1977, Colborn became the first Royals pitcher to pitch a no-hitter in Royals Stadium against the Texas Rangers, winning the game 6-0. He was also known as one of the best fielding pitchers in baseball. He pitched only eight games the following season before he was traded to the Seattle Mariners in exchange for outfielder Steve Braun.
RANK #184 – JERRY MARTIN (#25) – Right Field (1982-1983)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 649.98
171st Royals Player in Franchise History
Jerry Martin was traded to the Kansas City Royals by the San Francisco Giants in exchange for pitchers Rich Gale and Bill Laskey. Martin got off to a hot start, batting .300 by mid-May. He became the Royals everyday right fielder. He hit 15 home runs during the season. His best game came May 4, 1982 in a losing effort against the Milwaukee Brewers when he hit 3-4 with a home run and four RBIs. Unfortunately, in April of 1983, a muscle tear in his wrist ended his season. He was granted free agency at the end of the season because of his involvement with a FBI cocaine sting. Martin, along with Willie Aikens, Willie Wilson and Vida Blue were sent to Federal prison for three months. They became the first major league players to go to prison during their careers. Martin was eventually picked up by the New York Mets. He played 1,240 innings in right field for Kansas City.
RANK #183 – WILLIE BLOOMQUIST (#8) – Utility Player (2009-2010)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 654.90
687th Royals Player in Franchise History
Willie Bloomquist signed as a free agent in 2009 after playing for the Seattle Mariners. Bloomquist played most of the season in the outfield, but he also played shortstop and second base. Bloomquist demonstrated very well that he could play any position with Kansas City, playing every fielding position except pitcher and catcher. He hit .265 in his first season with 25 stolen bases, however he only hit 29 RBIs. His best game came on June 13, 2009 in a 7-4 win against the Cincinnati Reds when he hit 3-4 with three RBIs. He continued his utility role in 2010 with a .265 average and three home runs. However, his contract was sold to the Cincinnati Reds in September of 2010. He played in 197 games for Kansas City.
RANK #182 – RICHIE SCHEINBLUM (#5) – Right Field (1972, 1974)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 661.43
66th Royals Player in Franchise History
Richie Scheinblum’s contract was sold to the Kansas City Royals in 1971 from the Washington Senators/Texas Rangers. In his previous five major league seasons, Scheinblum played very little and only had a .208 batting average. However, 1972 turned out the be the best season of his career. After right fielder Bob Oliver was traded to California, Scheinblum became an everyday player. He was hitting .331 by Independence Day and he was picked to represent the Kansas City Royals in the 1972 All-Star Game in Atlanta. His offensive output dropped somewhat after the All-Star break, but he finished the season with a .300 batting average and only 40 strikeouts to 58 base on balls. During the season, Scheinblum, a Jewish-American baseball player, decided to wear a black armband in remembrance of the Israeli Olympians who were killed by Palestinian terrorists during the 1972 Olympics in Munich, West Germany. Scheinblum was traded at the end of the season, along with Roger Nelson, to the Cincinnati Reds for outfielder Hal McRae and pitcher Wayne Simpson. After splitting the 1973 season between Cincinnati and California, he was traded back to the Kansas City Royals for third baseman Paul Schaal in 1974. This second time with the Royals, Scheinblum had nowhere near the production he had in 1972, only batting .181 with two RBIs in 83 at bats. In early August, his contract was sold to the St. Louis Cardinals where he finished his career that year. Richie Scheinblum became the last player to wear the number “5” for the Royals other than Hall of Famer George Brett.
RANK #181 – ANDY HASSLER (#16) – Starting Pitcher (1976-1978)
PERFORMANCE INDEX: 665.55
109th Royals Player in Franchise History
The Kansas City Royals purchased Andy Hassler’s contract from the California Angels in July of 1976. Between May 4, 1974 and July 31, 1976, Hassler had lost 18 straight games with the Angels and Royals combined. Finally, on August 5, 1976, he earned his first victory over the Chicago White Sox in the first game of a doubleheader by the score of 9-2. He finished the 1976 season with a 2.89 ERA in 19 appearances. Unfortunately, Hassler did not perform well in the 1976 ALCS going 0-1 in two games with a 6.14 ERA. In 1977, Hassler became a part of the starting rotation of the Royals earning nine wins, three complete games and one shutout. Again, though, he did not perform well in the 1977 playoffs and went 0-1 in one start against the Yankees. In 1978, Hassler continued to perform poorly and in mid-June, his contract was sold to the Boston Red Sox. He finished his Royals career with a 3.81 ERA. His overall record in Kansas City was 15-16 in 50 starts during 314 1/3 innings pitched.
Tavish Whiting is an American Government teacher in Lee's Summit, MO
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