Kansas City Royals infielder Whit Merrifield didn't play in the opener of a split doubleheader against the Detroit Tigers on Monday, ending his consecutive games streak at a franchise-record 553, which also was the longest active string in the majors.
Merrifield's streak dated to June 24, 2018. It was the longest in the major leagues since Miguel Tejada played in 1,152 straight games from June 2, 2000-June 21, 2007, according to ESPN Stats & Information research.
"It's been a great run for Whit,'' Royals manager Mike Matheny said. "It's just been impressive the way he's been able to go about it.''
Atlanta Braves first baseman Matt Olson now has the longest active streak of consecutive games in the majors at 221, according to ESPN Stats & Info research. Cal Ripken Jr. holds the all-time record of playing 2,632 straight games.
"It's been a long run. I'm proud of it. I'm not sure it will be touched anytime soon by someone that plays the way I play it. Maybe like a DH or a first baseman. But to bounce around, play multiple positions, run, steal bases, play in the weather that KC has to offer. I'm pretty proud of the number I put up," Merrifield told reporters before the game, according to the Kansas City Star.
Merrifield, 33, exited Sunday's game with right toe discomfort. He was fitted with a walking boot and is expected to miss at least two weeks.
The two-time All-Star is hitting .240 with five home runs, 36 RBIs, 14 stolen bases and a .635 OPS in 84 games this season.
The Royals won the game 3-1.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.