Cardinals–Royals rivalry

Cardinals–Royals rivalry

The rivalry between the St. Louis Cardinals of the National League and Kansas City Royals of the American League is a Major League Baseball series sometimes known as the I-70 Series or the Show-Me Series. This rivalry is so called because the two cities are located in the state of Missouri, whose nickname is the "Show Me State", and both cities are located along Interstate 70. They played each other for the first time in the 1985 World Series, which the Royals won in seven games. Owing to their geographical proximity, the teams face each other every regular season in interleague play.


  • Background 1
  • 1985 World Series 2
  • Interleague Play 3
  • Year-by-year results 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6
    • Bibliography 6.1


The Cardinals are one of Major League Baseball's oldest teams, having played in the National League in St. Louis since they were formed as the Brown Stockings in 1882. The Royals joined the majors in 1969 as one of the American League's first expansion teams. Because there was no interleague play until 1997, the only opportunity for the Cardinals and Royals to meet was in the World Series, which occurred in 1985. The two teams had gone through several periods of prolonged success (and several notable droughts) leading up to the 1985 World Series. The Cardinals fell on hard times in the 1970s after winning the 1964 World Series and the 1967 World Series and appearing in the 1968 World Series. The Kansas City Royals had become one of the best teams in baseball by the late 1970s, reaching the American League playoffs six times in nine years between 1976 and 1984, including the 1980 World Series. After several down years, the Cardinals emerged as a pennant contender in the early 1980s, winning the 1982 World Series.

1985 World Series

The first official meeting between the Cardinals and Royals was in the 1985 World Series. This marked only the second time in baseball history that two teams from the state of Missouri met in the World Series. The first time was in 1944, when the Cardinals played the St. Louis Browns. That series also marked the last time to date that a World Series was held entirely in one ballpark, as the Cardinals and Browns shared Sportsman's Park at the time.

The Cardinals won the National League East division by three games over the New York Mets and then defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers four games to two in the National League Championship Series. The Royals won the American League West division by one game over the California Angels and then defeated the Toronto Blue Jays four games to three in the American League Championship Series.

Notably, the Cardinals manager in 1985, Whitey Herzog, had formerly been the Royals manager and had led Kansas City to the franchise's first three playoff appearances – in 1976, 1977, and 1978 – before being fired after the Royals missed the playoffs in 1979.

The Royals lost the first two games of the World Series at home and were on the verge of elimination, down 1-0 in the bottom of the 9th in game 6, when umpire Jorge Orta safe at first. Orta was later thrown out at third on a botched sacrifice attempt and did not score. The Royals would go on to win the game 2-1 in the bottom of the 9th following the put-out of Orta (the only out recorded in the inning). The Royals then went on to win game 7 the following day 11-0 for their first and thus far only World Series title. The Royals became the first team ever to win the World Series after dropping games 1 and 2 at home. The Royals would not return to the MLB postseason for 29 years, until their wildcard entrance in 2014.

Interleague Play

Interleague play in 1997 allowed the I-70 Series to be revived in non-exhibition games. The first few seasons of the series were rather even, with the Cardinals holding a slight advantage with a 14–13 record through the 2003 season. Through the 2014 season, the Cardinals held the series advantage 46–34, with each team having a winning record at the other's home field (Cardinals 30-16 at Kaufman Stadium, Royals 18-16 at Busch Stadiums).[1] The Royals took two out of three from the Cardinals in 2010 behind victories from starting pitchers Zack Greinke and Bruce Chen. In 2011, the Cardinals won four of the six matchups, three of them in the eighth inning or later. The last four games in the series were one-run games. In 2012, the Cardinals again won four of the six games, on the strength of a three-game sweep in Kansas City over June 22–24. The Royals won the season series for the first time since 2010 in 2014, taking 3 out of 4. They won the first two games in St. Louis 6-0 and 8-7 respectively, and after losing Game 3 5-2 in 11 in Kansas City, won the final game 3-2 after being down 2-0 late.

Year-by-year results

Year Cardinals W Royals W Note
1997 2
1 Cardinals win the first official game played between the two teams, played at Kauffman Stadium
1998 1 2
Played at Busch Memorial Stadium
1999 1 2
2000 2
2001 0 3
First series sweep for Royals
2002 5
1 First year of 6-game home-and-away format
2003 3
Cardinals win tiebreaker outscoring Royals 43–37 (4–10, 8–1, 2–5, 3–6, 13–9, 13-6)
2004 3
0 First series sweep for Cardinals; Series reverts back to 3-game format
2005 2
1 The 20th anniversary of the two clubs meeting in the 1985 World Series
2006 4
2 Series reverts back to 6-game home-and-away format
2007 3
Royals win tiebreaker outscoring Cardinals 40–31 (8–1, 3–7, 17–8, 5–3, 1–5, 6–7)
2008 2 4
Royals win 4-1 in the final game between the two clubs at Busch Memorial Stadium on June 19.
2009 5
1 Cardinals win 5-0 in the first game between the two clubs at Busch Stadium on May 22.
2010 1 2
Series reverts back to 3-game format
2011 4
2 Cardinals win four of the six matchups in the later innings
2012 4
2013 3
1 Four consecutive games were played May 27–30, first two at Kauffman Stadium, the last two at Busch Stadium.
2014 1 3
Royals win series for the first time since the 2010 season.


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External links

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  • [8]"There's always a festive air when the St. Louis Cardinals come to Kauffman Stadium to renew the old Missouri rivalry with the Royals."


  • Spivak, Jeff. Crowning the Kansas City Royals: Remembering the 1985 World Series Champs. Sports Publishing LLC. ISBN 1582618267.