Derek Gordon, Alex’s Brother, Purchased by Royals
By David Hill
Alex Gordon had a rough start to his major league career, but has since blossomed into a legitimate star with the Kansas City Royals. Now, hoping that lightning will strike twice in the same family tree, the Royals have purchased the contract of Derek Gordon, Alex’s younger brother, from the Kansas City T-Bones of the American Association.
The undrafted Gordon put together a solid career at Park College, where he ended his career 24-8 with 172 strikeouts in 212 innings pitched. Gordon set his school’s record for wins and strikeouts last season before signing with the T-Bones after his career was over. Despite a rather unimpressive 1-1 record with a 6.49 ERA, Gordon was pitching at a level rated as the equivalent of AA in the minors. He was certainly making quite the jump in the talent he was facing.
Perhaps it was that adjustment that caused Derek Gordon’s numbers to look as unimpressive as they were. He gave up only 28 hits in his 26.1 innings of work, but also walked 23 batters. Yet, there were flashes of brilliance, such as the four hit complete game shutout he threw in his first start.
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Even though there does appear to be some talent, it may take some time for this Gordon to reach the majors. Control definitely appears to be a concern, and Gordon would need to work his way up the ladder. The idea that the Gordon Brothers would be on the Royals together would seem to be a dream that could happen three or four years down the line at the earliest.
With that in mind, perhaps the signing of Derek Gordon could have a secondary benefit for the Royals. As Alex Gordon could potentially be a free agent after this season, should he decline his player option, the concept of possibly getting to play in the majors on the same team as his brother could be a bargaining chip. While it may not result in much of a discount, it is certainly worth the Royals pursuing.
Even without that, the Royals have brought in a young pitcher who, if he has an arm like his older brother, could be another future flamethrower in the bullpen. Without much of a cost, Derek Gordon could become an intriguing player, even without his brother being on the team.
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