The 2012 Kansas City Royals won't be remembered as the team that ended the Royals' streak of postseason absences, but they'll at least lay claim to something -- the pitching staff with the most strikeouts in franchise history.
The Royals set the mark Sunday when reliever Jeremy Jeffress struck out Cleveland's Brent Lillibridge to give the team its 1,154th strikeout of the season, which surpassed the 2009 team's mark of 1,153 for most in franchise history.
The bullpen has been one of the best in the league at strikeouts all season. Entering Monday's series with the Detroit Tigers, Kansas City's bullpen ranked first in the American League in strikeouts with 526. Reliever Aaron Crow, who had 65 strikeouts for the year after the Cleveland series, wasn't surprised:
"With Tim [Collins] and Greg [Holland], and Kelvin [Herrera] and [Louis] Coleman, those guys can strike out guys with the best of them," Crow said. "They've done a good job, but at the end of the day if you get a ground ball or a popup or a strikeout, it's the same thing. You just try to get guys out, and strikeouts mean you're dominant and have good stuff."