Kansas City Royals: Team needs to keep Alex Gordon around in 2020
By Ryan Sikes
Alex Gordon has a steep $20 million mutual option for 2020. The Kansas City Royals won’t pay him that but they need to keep him around.
It’s extremely rare in this day and age to find a player who has played his entire career with one team but that’s exactly what Alex Gordon has done with the Kansas City Royals. The former Nebraska Cornhusker was drafted in the 2005 Major League Amateur Draft as the second overall pick.
He made his debut on April 2, 2007 against the Boston Red Sox. Gordon was an intergral part of that 2015 World Series team in which he slashed 0.271/0.377/0.432 with 13 home runs and 48 RBI’s during the regular season. He missed several weeks with a groin injury but returned in time for the miraculous postseason run.
With the Royals trailing 4-3 in the bottom of the 9th inning of Game 1, Gordon launched a solo home run off Jeurys Familia, and they would go onto win 5-4 in 14 innings. Aside from a couple down seasons in 2016 and 2017, Gordon has been a consistent hitter in the Royals lineup and has been terrific with the glove, winning 6 Gold-Glove awards.
He’s in the final year of his 4-year contract extension and has a $20 mutual option on the table for next season. It’s an awfully steep price for a player with a 0.6 WAR on the 2019 season but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t find a way to keep him around.
The Royals are in the midst of their rebuild now but Gordon’s presence could be invaluable for the young core the front office is trying to develop. The 35-year old has specifically stated that he would like to play next season and doesn’t want to be anywhere else:
"“I don’t want to play anywhere else. Yeah, I want to retire as a Royal. I’ve established my family here with my kids. This is home.”"
While that’s certainly admirable, money definitely talks and if Gordon gets what he is looking for, don’t be surprised if he leaves this offseason. However, every young team needs that veteran player to show them the proper work ethic and that’s exactly what Gordon would provide.