A title fitting for a true leader.
The Kansas City Royals made seven-time All-Star catcher Salvador Perez the fourth captain in franchise history before their opener against the Minnesota Twins on Thursday. It’s a pinnacle achievement for the Kansas City legend, who made history as just the fourth captain in team history.
Hall of Fame third baseman George Brett and longtime star Frank White were the first Royals captains in history. They both held the title from 1989-90, when White retired. Afterwards, Brett carried it on until his own retirement after the 1993 season.
It would be another 10 years until another player was Mike Sweeney was the last Royals captain, holding the honor from 2003 until leaving for Oakland for the 2008 season.
Salvy is a 7-time All-Star, has won four Silver Slugger awards, five Gold Glove awards and was the MVP of the 2015 World Series, when the Royals beat the Mets for their second championship, and first in 30 years.
He has also constantly been among the most popular players in the Royals’ clubhouse. Perez’s presence in the locker room immediately puts young players at ease, which is a good thing for a club in the midst of a major youth movement, and he’s always willing to sign autographs and take photographs for fans that show up long before the first pitch.
“Salvy is a Royals icon, a Kansas City icon and a baseball icon,” Royals general manager J.J. Picollo said. “This honor reflects not just his place in Royals history but just as importantly the work he puts in and the leadership he provides our organization.”
A beloved figure in Kansas City, and in MLB as a whole, Perez is among a dying breed of players who have stayed with the same big league organization throughout their entire careers.
Perez, 32, is coming off a season in which he hit .254 with 23 homers and 76 RBIs while playing just 114 games, one of his lowest totals of his career.