With apologies to the Tigers and Indians, the big story in the AL Central is the resurgence of the long-suffering Royals, who have gone from also-rans to the middle of the wild-card race with 11 wins in their past 12 games. That hot streak has carried them from 10 games out of the wild-card lead on July 22 to within 4½ games entering Monday night.

If there's bad news, it's that the Tigers and Indians are just as hot as the Royals. And the AL playoff race promises to be a barn-burner, with all three divisions still up for grabs and six teams chasing two wild-card bids. But Kansas City has gotten solid pitching from Ervin Santana, Jeremy Guthrie and James Shields, and that's always a plus in a crowded race. Will the Royals reach their first postseason since the 1985 World Series? Vote below!


King of the mound

Will Royals pitchers, including James Shields, lead the team to its first winning season since 2003?

SportsNation

How will the Royals finish the regular season?

  •  
    59%
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    27%
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    3%
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    11%

Discuss (Total votes: 2,293)


What's not to love?

Royals fans hope Alex Gordon can help Kansas City reverse years of losing. Are you jumping on the Royals' bandwagon?

SportsNation

Are you rooting for the Royals to make the playoffs?

  •  
    62%
  •  
    38%

Discuss (Total votes: 2,279)


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