While wins are short on supply, the Kansas City Royals have been swept up in the home run derby the 2019 season has provided and may set a team record.
Do not read into the title that the Kansas City Royals are crushing it better than other teams. Even as they close in on a possible franchise-high mark for balls hit out of the park they are still just 28th in the majors in this category, only ahead of the Detroit Tigers and Miami Marlins. Probably no coincidence that those two teams are two of the three that have a worse win-loss record than Kansas City.
But in a season of little to celebrate we will acknowledge this potential milestone and embrace it, just as we did Jorge Soler setting (and still adding to) the individual Royals home run record. Soler may not be done with history yet as he is swinging his way to possibly being the first Royal to lead the AL in jacks.
We need to go all the way back to 1987 to find the current team record holder for home runs which is 168. This mark was accomplished off the big lumber of players named Danny Tartabull (34), Steve Balboni (24), George Brett (22), Bo Jackson (22), Frank White (17) and Kevin Seitzer (15). During that season having 168 homers was good enough for 17th overall as the ball was not flying out of the park as it does now.
To put that in perspective, the team with the highest home run total in ’87 was the Detroit Tigers with 225. A club that hits that many this year would only come in 11th place and with a couple of weeks remaining, it could end up as low as 15th overall.
Going into Tuesday night’s game number 152 against the A’s, the Royals have smacked 156 dingers and are on pace for 167 which will put them one short of passing the record. If they continue at their September long ball clip though, they would reach 170 and set a new bar.