Alright, so it’s probably too early to really, truly call this a meaningful series. But when it comes to Indians-Royals, this is about as big as it gets.
The Indians and Royals haven’t played a somewhat meaningful game since May, 1997.
On May 20 the Royals came to town tied for 1st with Tribe at 20-20. The Tribe trailed 3-2 entering the 8th when Manny Ramirez belted a two-run shot off of Jamie Walker to give the Indians the lead. The Indians would go one to sweep the series and the Royals stumbled to a 67-94 finish.
But this year feels a little bigger than that, perhaps because both teams are actually over .500, unlike in ’97.
The last time these two teams faced each other when both were at least five games over .500 was on June 28, 1995. The Indians entered the day 38-17, while the Royals were in 2nd place at 30-24. Charles Nagy would out-duel Kevin Appier that day, leading the Tribe to a 5-2 win. The Royals would finish that year in 2nd place with 70-74 record – a full 30 games behind the Tribe.