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Kansas City Royals second-half preview: Time for postseason arrival

Verducci's Quick Pitch: Kansas City Royals

Sports Illustrated's Tom Verducci previews the second half of the MLB season for the Kansas City Royals.

Kansas City Royals

Record: 48-46

Standing: 2nd in AL Central

Team Leaders:

Batting Average: Salvador Perez, .283

Home Runs: Perez, 11

ERA: Yordano Ventura, 3.22

After years of losing, the Royals' rebuilding efforts are beginning to come to fruition. They finished with 86 wins last season and are looking to top that this season. Despite struggles from Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas and Billy Butler, Kansas City is above .500 at the All-Star break and in the playoff hunt. 

James Shields, Yordano Ventura, Jason Vargas and Danny Duffy all have ERAs below 4.00, while the bullpen has been among the best in baseball. Former Rays starter Wade Davis is having a breakout season in relief, posting a 1.13 ERA with 62 strikeouts in 39 2/3 innings. He sets up closer Greg Holland, who has converted 25 of 26 save opportunities. 

- Evan Webeck

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