NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- It won't be long now. Royals pitchers and catchers will report to Spring Training at Surprise, Ariz., on Feb. 11. And the first of their 36 Cactus League games will be played on Feb. 22.
It shapes up as a rather lengthy camp. The 36-game schedule matches the Royals' longest in franchise history (also 2009) and there also are three off-days, instead of the usual one.
The opener, as usual, will be against the Royals' co-tenants at the Surprise complex, the Texas Rangers, at 2:05 p.m. CT on Friday, Feb. 22. The two teams also meet on the next two days as well and then only once more before camp ends.
The Royals will have a total of 21 games at Surprise Stadium, 18 of them as the home team.
Most of the pitchers and catchers generally start informal workouts at the complex well in advance of the official first day. So do many position players who are due to report on Feb. 14. That means the first full-squad workout will be on Feb. 15.
Mail orders for season ticket packages at Surprise will be accepted beginning on Monday, Dec. 17. Go to www.royals/com/springtraining or call 623-222-2222 for a ticket brochure. Online sales for individual games will start the same day through ticketmaster.com or by calling 800-745-3000. Purchases can be made at the Surprise Stadium ticket office starting on Jan. 5.
Special travel packages also are being offered at www.royals.com/springtravel or by calling 800-892-7687.
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com.