Consummate Pro, Alex Gordon, Calls It A Career After Royals' Season Ends
Longtime Royals Star Alex Gordon will be remembered for hitting the ninth-inning home run that tied Game One, but the fan favorite garnered accolades for his performance on the field and off.
Alex Gordon announced his retirement from a 14-year Kansas City Royals career marked by big moments and his steadiness through baseball’s unkind twists and turns.
Gordon’s last game will be at Kauffman Stadium on Sunday afternoon, Sept. 27, against the Detroit Tigers. Playing on a one-year contract, Gordon said he privately told his family and close friends that this would be his last roaming left field as a seven-time Gold Glove winner.
“I wanted to keep it as quiet as I could until toward the end of the season,” said Gordon.
If he’s awarded his eighth Gold Glove for fielding excellence after this season, it would tie former second baseman Frank White for the most by one player in Royals history.
Royals general manager Dayton Moore says Gordon informed him about his decision last week.
“We know how special he is, how committed he is in all aspects of his life and truly represents what a baseball player is,” said Moore who was more than just Gordon’s front office boss. Each side proved to be loyal to each other when the time came to negotiate a new contract.
Gordon is among the Royals career all-time leaders in several offensive categories, but one category in which he set an all-time Royals record—hit by pitches (121)—was apropos for the type of player he was. Always taking one for the team. Ouch!
“When I started playing this, I just wanted everyone to see me as a hard worker, someone that played the game the right way and somebody who was a good teammate,” said Gordon after taking a moment during his zoom news conference to collect himself.
It wasn’t uncommon to see Gordon fully stretch into a body dive for a line drive, or running into the leftfield wall, and more often than not coming up with the crowd-gasping catch.
But he had his most memorable moments at the plate during the Royals surge to a World Series championship. Gordon’s three years as an American League All-Star (2013, ’14 and ’15) coincided with the Royals’ best years of the decade. His game-tying homer in the bottom of the ninth set the tone in Game One of the 2015 World Series championship.
While staying in shape, Gordon was adamant about what he ate and drank. But after Sunday’s game, he admits he’ll break down and eat a pizza with his wife and three kids.
Beyond that, he has no set plans but will continue to make Kansas City his home.
Gordon says, “I’m going to be around, so hopefully in some capacity I’ll be involved with the Royals.”