Crossing Paths: The Chicago Cubs Vs. Kansas City Royals Rivalry

Kevin Smith

royals vs cubs

The clash between the Chicago Cubs and the Kansas City Royals in Major League Baseball has forged an interleague rivalry that captures the essence of America’s pastime.

Though belonging to different leagues, the Cubs and the Royals have encountered each other occasionally during the regular season, sparking moments of excitement and competition.

With rich histories and devoted fanbases, both teams bring a sense of pride and passion to their matchups.

This introduction sets the stage for exploring the unique dynamics between these two storied franchises, highlighting iconic moments, legendary players, and the unwavering support from fans that add color and intensity to the Chicago Cubs vs.

Kansas City Royals rivalry.

History: Chicago Cubs Vs Kansas City Royals

The history of the Chicago Cubs and the Kansas City Royals shows some notable similarities and differences, despite being two distinct franchises from different leagues.

Let’s compare them in several aspects

Founding and Early Years

  • The Chicago Cubs: The Cubs were founded in 1876 as the Chicago White Stockings, making them one of the oldest professional baseball teams in existence. They were a charter member of the National League (NL) when the league was established in 1876.

  • The Kansas City Royals: The Royals were established in 1969 as an expansion team in the American League (AL). They were part of the MLB’s expansion efforts to accommodate the growing interest in baseball across the country.


  • The Chicago Cubs: The Cubs achieved legendary status due to their prolonged championship drought.
    They won their last World Series title in 1908 and famously endured a 108-year championship drought until they broke the curse in 2016, winning the World Series against the Cleveland Indians.

  • The Kansas City Royals: The Royals have won two World Series championships.
    They claimed their first title in 1985 when they defeated the St. Louis Cardinals in a memorable seven-game series. Their second championship came in 2015 when they defeated the New York Mets.


  • The Chicago Cubs: The Cubs play their home games at Wrigley Field, located in the North Side of Chicago. Wrigley Field is one of the oldest ballparks in the league and is renowned for its ivy-covered outfield walls and unique atmosphere.

  • The Kansas City Royals: The Royals play their home games at Kauffman Stadium, often referred to as “The K.” Kauffman Stadium is known for its modern amenities and beautiful fountains beyond the outfield wall.

Fanbase: Chicago Cubs Vs Kansas City Royals

Chicago Cubs

The Chicago Cubs boast one of the most dedicated and loyal fanbases in sports. Their unwavering support, even during tough times, stems from the team’s rich history, iconic players, and memorable moments.

Cubs fans are spread across the nation and internationally, making their presence felt at away games too. Wrigley Field’s charm, with its ivy-covered walls and nostalgic atmosphere, enhances the fan experience.

The pinnacle of their devotion came in 2016 when the Cubs won the World Series, breaking a 108-year championship drought and creating immense jubilation and relief among their passionate fanbase.

Kansas City Royals

The Kansas City Royals have a passionate and dedicated fanbase, extending beyond the city to neighboring Midwest states.
Their loyalty is fueled by the team’s success, notably the World Series championships in 1985 and 2015, which left lasting memories and a sense of pride.

Kauffman Stadium, known as “The K,” further enhances the fan experience with its welcoming atmosphere and beautiful fountains.
While their history may not be as long as the Cubs’, beloved players like George Brett and Salvador Perez have deeply connected the team with its devoted fanbase.

Iconic Moments: Chicago Cubs Vs Kansas City Royals Rivalry

As the Chicago Cubs and the Kansas City Royals belong to different leagues, their direct head-to-head rivalry is limited due to interleague play occurring only periodically during the regular season.

There have been a few notable and memorable moments when these two teams faced each other

Interleague Debuts (1997)

The Chicago Cubs and the Kansas City Royals met for the first time in history during interleague play in 1997. The series marked the beginning of their interleague rivalry, bringing together two storied franchises with passionate fanbases.

Crosstown Classic World Series (2016)

While not a direct Cubs-Royals matchup, it’s worth mentioning the 2016 World Series, where the Cubs faced the Cleveland Indians.

Both the Cubs and the Royals had long championship droughts, and the Cubs’ victory over the Indians in a thrilling seven-game series had implications for fans of both teams.

It marked the end of the Cubs’ 108-year drought, inspiring hope for Royals fans, as they, too, were in the hunt for future championships.

Kauffman Stadium Pitchers’ Duel (2018)

In a memorable interleague game at Kauffman Stadium in 2018, the Cubs’ Kyle Hendricks and the Royals’ Danny Duffy engaged in a pitchers’ duel. The game remained scoreless until the 9th inning when the Cubs’ Albert Almora Jr.

hit a home run, breaking the deadlock. The Cubs won the game 1-0 in a thrilling display of pitching prowess.

Recent Performance: Chicago Cubs Vs Kansas City Royals

Game 1: Royals 6, Cubs 2

  • Salvador Perez’s dominant performance with two solo home runs and three RBIs led the Royals to victory.

  • Brad Keller delivered a solid outing, pitching six innings and allowing only one run on four hits.

  • Ian Happ’s solo homer and Sergio Alcantara’s RBI single were the only runs for the Cubs.

Game 2: Cubs 7, Royals 6

  • The Cubs mounted a thrilling comeback, scoring six runs in the seventh inning to snatch the win.

  • Rafael Ortega’s grand slam and solo homer, totaling five RBIs, were pivotal for the Cubs.

  • Ryan O’Hearn, Emmanuel Rivera, and Nicky Lopez contributed with home runs for the Royals.

Game 3: Royals 9, Cubs 1

  • The Royals secured the series win with a dominant performance, highlighted by Andrew Benintendi’s three-run homer.

  • Carlos Hernandez pitched six scoreless innings and struck out six batters for the Royals.

  • David Bote’s RBI single was the lone run for the Cubs.

Chicago Cubs Vs Kansas City Royals Rivalry

Season Date Venue Winner Score
1997 May 16 Wrigley Field Cubs 5-3
2002 June 23 Kauffman Stadium Royals 7-2
2008 July 19 Wrigley Field Cubs 4-1
2013 August 6 Kauffman Stadium Royals 3-2
2016 May 29 Wrigley Field Cubs 6-4
2019 June 30 Kauffman Stadium Royals 5-3
2020 July 15 Wrigley Field Cubs 8-2
2021 August 8 Kauffman Stadium Cubs 7-5


When did the Chicago Cubs and the Kansas City Royals first meet in a competitive game?

The Chicago Cubs and the Kansas City Royals first met in a competitive game during interleague play in 1997.

Have the Cubs and the Royals ever faced each other in the World Series?

The Cubs and the Royals have not faced each other in the World Series.

Which ballpark is considered the home field for the Chicago Cubs when they play against the Kansas City Royals?

When playing against the Kansas City Royals, the Chicago Cubs are considered the visiting team, and the Royals’ home ballpark, Kauffman Stadium, is the venue for these interleague matchups.

What are the main factors contributing to the passionate fanbases of both teams?

The Cubs’ passionate fanbase is influenced by their rich history and iconic moments, including their 2016 World Series victory that ended a 108-year championship drought. For the Royals, success in the 1980s and 2015 World Series championships solidified their dedicated fanbase, particularly in the Midwest.

How often do the Cubs and the Royals play against each other in a regular season?

As part of the MLB’s interleague play, the Cubs and the Royals typically play against each other in a limited number of games during the regular season, usually a series of two or three games every few years. The exact schedule varies from season to season.

To Recap

The rivalry between the Chicago Cubs and the Kansas City Royals, though infrequent due to interleague play, has provided fans with memorable moments.

Both teams boast passionate and dedicated fanbases, united by their respective histories and successes.

The Cubs, with their long-standing legacy and iconic victory in the 2016 World Series, have a widespread and loyal following, while the Royals’ recent championships and beloved players have endeared them to fans in the Midwest.

As these storied franchises continue to cross paths, their interleague matchups remain a source of excitement and intrigue, underscoring the timeless appeal of Major League Baseball and the enduring passion of their devoted fanbases.

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Kevin Smith

I am a dedicated learner who is constantly pursuing my dreams in many areas of life. I am a Finance major at the University of Maryland, a professional baseball player for the Toronto Blue Jays and the owner of my personal brand, Elevate Baseball. I hope to inspire younger learners of all sports and interests to tirelessly pursue their dreams, whatever that may be. LinkedIn