Who recorded the most recent cycle in KC Royals history?

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The 2024 season is young, but it has been fairly tame. The standings currently sit how many thought they would this time two months ago, with one or two surprises. It takes time for a team to truly shock MLB, but it only takes one game for a player to shock historically. I remember Domingo Germán's perfect game on June 28, 2023, coming out of nowhere. That got me thinking: when was the last time a KC Royals batter similarly shocked baseball?

A lot has changed for the KC Royals since George Brett's second cycle.

One way Kansas City batters have surprised fans is by recording the coveted cycle. No MLB player has hit for the cycle yet this year, but odds say we are due for one. Five players hit for the cycle in 2023, the first coming from Luis Arráez on April 11. The Royals have had a soft cycle watch on Bobby Witt Jr. once this season, but the shortstop has not caught the elusive milestone yet.

Only four different Kansas City players account for the franchise's six cycles. Here are the first five:

  1. Freddie Patek - July 9, 1971
  2. John Mayberry - August 5, 1977
  3. George Brett - May 28, 1979
  4. Frank White - September 26, 1979
  5. Frank White - August 3, 1982

The most recent cycle by a Royals player took place nearly 27 years ago in the SkyDome against the Toronto Blue Jays. It was Brett's second career cycle, while the 1985 World Champions sat last in the AL West, sitting 16 games behind the Oakland Athletics. Brett was on a hot stretch entering the three-game series up north, and the cycle on July 25, 1990, was an appropriate pinnacle.

Brett sealed his cycle in the top of the seventh inning, where he homered off Frank Wills to put the Royals up 6-0. It was not a high-leverage situation, but that single swing cemented his second cycle with an exclamation point.

“I thought I’d give it one shot for the homer," Brett said following the game. "But when it was 0-and-2 I was just trying to make contact. You would think after 17 years I would know by now that I’m not a home-run hitter. I don’t know what he threw at 0-and-2, but I do know that I hit it good.”

Brett's performance was not only pivotal for his achievements but also the team's success. The Royals were victorious, earning their fourth consecutive win and handing the Blue Jays their third straight loss. Brett's 4-for-5 performance at the plate was instrumental in this victory and also extended his hitting streak to 15 games.

This trip to Toronto was just one of Brett's 2,707 career games, but it is yet another example of what made Brett so great. He didn't always need the power, but he is truly one of the greatest hitters in baseball's history.

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