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Thursday, January 18, 2018

Taking Back the Ballparks - Kansas City Royals

As you might have noticed, we’re alternating between AL and NL parks in this exercise, just like they used to do with the All-Star Game before All-Star Game hosting duties became a prize for successfully extorting local municipalities.

The good folks of Kansas City have been spared such a fate, as the local nine plays its ballgames in one of the oldest facilities in MLB. I haven’t been there (though I did look on from nearby a few years back – oddly enough, a few hours before the Royals were set to play their home opener), but it still looks like a gem.

Like some others on the list, the park has undergone a name change, though in that case it went from the vanilla Royals Stadium to its current Kauffman Stadium. The change was made to honor its former owner Ewing Kauffman, one month before he passed away. In other words, it was the good kind of change, the kind that almost never happens.

Kauffman is probably the frontrunner, but we’ll see if we can get a few worthwhile replacements, if necessary.

Ballpark History
Built: 1973
Capacity: 37,903
Name: Kauffman Stadium, 1993-present, Royals Stadium 1973-1993.
Other ballparks used by club in its current city: Municipal Stadium, 1969-1972. Also used by Kansas City A’s from 1955-67.
Distinctive Features: Obviously, the fountain behind right field; long-standing crowned scoreboard in straightaway center; Buck O’Neil legacy seat in Section 101; symmetrical outfield walls (hey, they’re distinctive now).

Ballpark Highlights:

In 1973, Nolan Ryan threw the first of his seven career no-hitters for the visiting Angels.

In the Royals’ 148th game of the 1980 season, George Brett went 2-4 in a 13-3 win over the A’s, pushing his season average to .400, the latest anyone was over .400 in the last 70 years.

In 1985, Jorge Orta reached on an infield hit, sparking a 2-run, ninth-inning rally in Game 6 of the World Series. The Royals would blitz the Cardinals the following night to win the club’s first World Series title. That’s it. Nothing else happened.

In 2014, KC rallied from a four-run deficit in the eighth, and a one-run deficit in the 12th, to beat Oakland in the AL wild card game, which marked the club’s first postseason contest in 29 years.

Two weeks later, with tying run Alex Gordon standing on third, Madison Bumgarner got Salvy Perez to pop-out to third in Game 7 of the World Series. The Royals would avenge the loss in the Fall Classic the following year.


TBtB Selections To Date:


San Francisco Giants - China Basin

Texas Rangers - The Ballpark in Arlington

San Diego Padres - Mission Field

Boston Red Sox - Fenway Park

Washington Nationals - Nationals Park

Tampa Bay Rays - Suncoast Dome

Philadelphia Phillies - Citizens Park

Seattle Mariners - Cascadia Field

Pittsburgh Pirates - Allegheny Park


Edited World Series Date.

SoSH U at work Posted: January 18, 2018 at 12:35 PM | 24 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: royals, stadium names

Reader Comments and Retorts

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Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. SoSH U at work Posted: January 18, 2018 at 03:12 PM (#5608957)
The Royals are on the clock.
   2. BDC Posted: January 18, 2018 at 03:21 PM (#5608965)
With any luck, I will be there on June 18th this year to see the Rangers.

I see nothing wrong with keeping Kauffman; as SoSH says, that's a classic way of naming a park and a good name, too. Is there any local feature that might be more evocative? The location appears to be Where Two Freeways Converge, which is not a great ballpark name.
   3. ajnrules Posted: January 18, 2018 at 03:22 PM (#5608968)
1915? Never knew that Kauffman Stadium has been around that long.

Anyways, here are some suggestions

-Fountains Park

-George Brett Park

-Buck O'Neil Field

-Royals Stadium
   4. QLE Posted: January 18, 2018 at 03:40 PM (#5608983)
In practical terms, the need to change the name isn't as apparent as it was with, say, Phone Company Park.

If we must have a new name:

-Monarchs Field
-Basie Park
-New Muehlebach Field
-Pendergast Stadium
-Charlie O-Rena
-The House That Denkinger Built
   5. villageidiom Posted: January 18, 2018 at 03:49 PM (#5608989)
I formally nominate Kauffman Stadium, just in case we would have overlooked it when everyone assumes it would get nominated.

Also: Geyser Permanente.
   6. SoSH U at work Posted: January 18, 2018 at 03:55 PM (#5608995)
I formally nominate Kauffman Stadium, just in case we would have overlooked it when everyone assumes it would get nominated.


Good call. I thought Safeco would get some support, but no one ever mentioned it.

   7. Greg Pope Posted: January 18, 2018 at 05:42 PM (#5609077)
The KC Masterpiece
   8. Dag Nabbit at ExactlyAsOld.com Posted: January 18, 2018 at 06:46 PM (#5609103)
I like Royals Stadium. Nice'n'simple. And it was the name for 20 years.

Monarch Stadium. For the old Negro League team (with a similar nickname)

Pendergast Pavilion.

Post #7 is a fun answer.
   9. Zach Posted: January 18, 2018 at 06:57 PM (#5609111)
Kauffman Stadium or Royals Stadium are the only two viable choices, I think.
   10. Rusty Priske Posted: January 19, 2018 at 09:17 AM (#5609364)
Don't change for the sake of changing.

Kauffman Stadium.
   11. Omineca Greg Posted: January 19, 2018 at 11:18 AM (#5609432)
Some people will know a lot more about it than me, but I get the strong impression that Ewing Kauffman was a great person. The link is to his foundation, which is dedicated to both formal education and teaching entrepreneurship. Kauffman was the best type of magnate; upon becoming wildly successful himself, he began to direct a lot of time, energy, and money into sharing his resources and expertise with the community, in hopes that others could enjoy his experience.

I really hope we end up going with Kauffman.

Here's a cartoon dating from the time the Royals were just starting. In a similar exercise to this one, fans were asked to suggest names for the new franchise, and these were some they came up with.
   12. SoSH U at work Posted: January 19, 2018 at 11:23 AM (#5609436)
Here's a cartoon dating from the time the Royals were just starting. In a similar exercise to this one, fans were asked to suggest names for the new franchise, and these were some they came up with.


Somebody, somewhere, should be the Tranquilizers.
   13. Jarrod HypnerotomachiaPoliphili (TeddyF.Ballgame) Posted: January 19, 2018 at 12:24 PM (#5609483)
Monarchs Stadium.
Divine Right Field.
Primogeniture Park.
   14. Nasty Nate Posted: January 19, 2018 at 12:41 PM (#5609499)
9. Zach Posted: January 18, 2018 at 06:57 PM (#5609111)
Kauffman Stadium or Royals Stadium are the only two viable choices, I think.
10. Rusty Priske Posted: January 19, 2018 at 09:17 AM (#5609364)
Don't change for the sake of changing.

Kauffman Stadium.
These are my sentiments.
   15. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: January 19, 2018 at 01:52 PM (#5609594)
Any actual Kansas Citians around? My impression is that Ewing Kauffman was well respected and poured a lot of personal money into the stadium and the area and having it be Kauffman Stadium is the right thing to do here.
   16. SoSH U at work Posted: January 19, 2018 at 02:17 PM (#5609627)

Any actual Kansas Citians around? My impression is that Ewing Kauffman was well respected and poured a lot of personal money into the stadium and the area and having it be Kauffman Stadium is the right thing to do here.


I think Zach is. And RR, if he makes an appearance.

I'm going to vote for Kauffman, and I imagine it will be a comfortable winner. But I don't see any harm in finding good alternate universe choices that we ultimately reject in favor of the current name, particularly since our results are non-binding.

   17. PreservedFish Posted: January 19, 2018 at 02:32 PM (#5609650)
I will almost certainly be voting for Kauffman.
   18. Ziggy's screen name Posted: January 19, 2018 at 02:33 PM (#5609651)
Some of the ballparks' names need to be changed, others don't. Much though I like 'Monarch's Field', I think that this is one of the parks that doesn't need to be changed.
   19. Mike Webber Posted: January 19, 2018 at 03:59 PM (#5609760)
Any actual Kansas Citians around? My impression is that Ewing Kauffman was well respected and poured a lot of personal money into the stadium and the area and having it be Kauffman Stadium is the right thing to do here.


Ewing Kauffman was/is definitely well liked, and it might be more true to say he put a lot of money into "the team" and the area rather than the stadium. He also receives all the credit for instituting the Royals Academy which is a pretty fascinating part of baseball history.
   20. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: January 19, 2018 at 04:08 PM (#5609767)
I was all set to vote for Royals Stadium, but the testimonials here to the life and legacy of Ewing Kauffman have changed my mind.
   21. Zach Posted: January 22, 2018 at 04:36 PM (#5611241)
I think Zach is. And RR, if he makes an appearance.

By birth and by following the team. I haven't actually lived there since going off to college.

Kauffman died before I really started following baseball, but my impression was that he was philanthropic and well-liked. He brought the team to KC and went to great lengths in his will to ensure that it stayed in KC. (To the extent that they had trouble competing for a few years due to restrictions in the will.)

If you want the park to be named after a person, I think Kauffman is the right person to name it after.
   22. SoSH U at work Posted: January 24, 2018 at 02:47 PM (#5612622)
We'll close this thread to nominees by tomorrow, to the extent it's even necessary.

   23. Infinite Yost (Voxter) Posted: January 24, 2018 at 07:14 PM (#5612879)
I thought Safeco would get some support, but no one ever mentioned it.


As a fan of the team that plays in Safeco, I can't imagine why anyone would have wanted that. It's a big insurance company with no ties to anything.
   24. Vrhovnik Posted: January 25, 2018 at 07:22 AM (#5613037)
I am a KC native, although I have not lived there for 30 years. I am old enough to remember the trauma when the A's left town and the euphoria when Ewing Kauffman (a local businessman) gained ownership of the team. Royals Stadium, when it opened in 1973, was quite the upgrade from old Municipal. I have no problem with the current name.

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