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John Schuerholz Elected to Royals Hall of Fame


KANSAS CITY, Mo. ( —The Kansas City Royals today announced that former General Manager John Schuerholz has been elected into the Royals Hall of Fame. Schuerholz will be inducted during a private luncheon on Friday, June 28, followed by an on-field recognition prior to the Royals game that night vs. the Cleveland Guardians.

Schuerholz was placed on the ballot by the Royals Hall of Fame Executive Board and elected through
the Royals Hall of Fame Veterans Committee voting process. The veterans committee vote considers
the candidacy of non-field personnel in addition to players and managers no longer eligible for
election by Regular Phase Royals Hall of Fame voting. The committee consists of 16 voting members
selected by the board, comprised of Royals Hall of Fame Members, Royals Club Executives and
media members. Candidates must be named on at least 75% of all ballots cast to be elected.

John Schuerholz began his Royals career with the simple title of Administrative Assistant. When
Cedric Tallis was named the Royals first General Manager, one of his first moves was to hire Lou
Gorman from Baltimore as Director of Player Development. Gorman was starting an entirely new
minor league system, and brought Schuerholz – then just 28 years old – along to help.

His rise was steady, holding the titles of Assistant Farm Director in 1970, Farm Director in 1976
and Director of Scouting and Player Development in 1977. In 1979, he was named a Vice President,
overseeing Minor League Operations, Scouting, and Player Development. In those roles, Schuerholz
had a hand in the development of every player the Royals minor league system produced during
that rapidly successful era.

In October 1981, Club President Joe Burke and owner Ewing Kauffman named Schuerholz the third
General Manager in Royals history. Under his leadership, the club rebuilt primarily around pitching the
Royals had drafted and developed, including Mark Gubicza, Bret Saberhagen and Danny Jackson.
The three formed a new rotation that also included Buddy Black, whom Schuerholz had acquired in
one of his first moves as GM, and Charlie Leibrandt, acquired in a June 1983 trade. The result was a
return to championship play as the 1984 Royals won the American League West.

Schuerholz made two key acquisitions the following year. The shrewdest was trading for catcher
Jim Sundberg, who provided a steady hand behind the plate. The finishing touch was an in-season
trade for outfielder Lonnie Smith. The 1985 club he built won the first World Series championship in
Royals history.

In later years, Schuerholz’s Royals signed the incomparable Bo Jackson (1986), drafted Royals
Hall of Famer Kevin Appier (1987) and acquired another Royals Hall of Famer in Jeff Montgomery
(1988). He departed in 1990 to join the Atlanta Braves, where he worked with Royals Executive Vice
President and General Manager J.J. Picollo. Schuerholz was elected to the National Baseball Hall of
Fame in 2017.

“It was a privilege to work for John,” said Picollo. “He demanded excellence from everyone and
exemplified that through his actions. Little did I know at the time but so many things we, the Royals,
do today are based on things learned during my time with him. I’m grateful to have worked for him.”