The Royals are in an unfamiliar position, surging into the playoff mix with two months left in the season.
The signs started to show in the offseason, when they parted with a highly touted prospect, Wil Myers, for two starting pitchers, James Shields and Wade Davis, who could help them win now.
It flashed again over the All-Star break, when three Kansas City representatives (Alex Gordon, Greg Holland and Salvador Perez) were in New York. It even turned them into buyers at the non-waiver Trade Deadline -- acquiring outfielder Justin Maxwell from the Astros -- and a legitimate contender in the American League Central.
And on Friday at 7:10 p.m. ET, the Royals will make their first trip to Citi Field in hopes of extending their season-best winning streak to 10 games.
"I keep in touch with what's going on in the baseball world," Maxwell said before his Kansas City debut and a 7-2 win over Minnesota on Thursday. "I see all the energy this team has, and I'm excited to be a part of it."
With all their youth, the Royals are bubbling with potential -- not only for the rest of this season, but for years to come.
It's similar to what the Mets are trying to build. In 2012, Kansas City sat 19 games below .500 at the Trade Deadline. The Mets are 10 games under this year. The Royals stood pat then, just as the Mets did on Wednesday. The pieces the Mets kept are helping them win, just as manager Terry Collins hopes his team can do in 2014. And maybe then they can be the ones adding pieces, too.
"I'm just hoping that next year at this time we're in the hunt," Collins said. "And our names are being mentioned as trying to get somebody who can help us win."
After his career-long streak of 35 innings without allowing a homer was snapped in his start against the Nationals on Saturday, Dillon Gee faces the Royals for the first time in his career.
Davis starts against the Mets for the first time as well, but he did face them in relief last year, walking one and striking out one when he was a member of the Rays.
Mets: Wright stays hot
David Wright collected hits at a torrid pace in July. The third baseman smacked 35 hits in just 26 games last month for a .315 batting average. He had 13 multihit games and just four hitless outings, and he started August the same way his July went -- with another strong day.
Wright gathered another hit in the fifth inning of the Mets' 3-0 loss to the Marlins in the finale on Thursday as part of a 1-for-3 day. His batting average now sits at .308.
Royals: Tejada making most of time
Miguel Tejada isn't an everyday player anymore, but he's making a case that he should be in Kansas City. The veteran infielder hit safely in the fourth inning on Thursday and has now recorded a hit in five straight games. In 13 games in July and one in August, the 39-year-old hit safely in all but two to raise his average to .287.
• The Mets and Royals are facing each other for the first time since June 13, 2004. Tom Glavine was the winning pitcher for New York in that game. Former Royals pitcher Zack Greinke took the loss for Kansas City.
David Wilson is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.