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Before The Royals There Were The Athletics

Missouri State Archives

The Royals came along in 1969 after a U.S. senator from Missouri, Stuart Symington, put the squeeze on Major League Baseball. But before the boys in blue a team called the Philadelphia Athletics came to our fair town.

On this edition of Up to Date, a look back at how major league ball came to Kansas City.  Steve Kraske and guests discuss what the city had to promise to lure the first major league team west of the Mississippi.  They also look at the wheeling and dealing of the one and only Charlie Finley who became owner of the Athletics.  His decision to move the A's even farther west left baseball fans here without a team . . . but it also cleared the way for the Royals.


  • Sam Zeff, reporter for KCUR
  • Jeff Logan, President of the Kansas City Baseball Historical Society
  • George Toma, former head groundskeeper for the Kansas City Athletics, Royals and Chiefs. George also served in the same position for every Super Bowl Game through 2014.
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