World championship aside, Alex Gordon entered free agency on a down note, and the Royals were happy to take him back at a discount. Certainly, the two months he missed with a strained groin didn't help, but even on a per-game basis, he ranked down there with Nick Markakis and Cameron Maybin and not in his usual top-20 range in Head-to-Head points leagues, which is his better format. He actually had his highest OPS in three years, though, and clearly the team that knows him best has confidence in a bounce-back season. The Royals don't make the best use of his on-base ability, typically batting him in the lower third of the order, and run production has been an issue for Gordon as well. But given his track record and the fact that his base skills haven't declined, he's still worth drafting as a No. 3 outfielder.
Gordon signed a four-year, $72 million contract with the Royals on Wednesday, Ken Rosental of Fox Sports reports. Gordon was reportedly seeking around $20 million per year, but took a small discount to stay with the defending champs. He should once again slot back into left field for the club, and will look to stay healthy following a season in which he managed just 104 games. Despite missing a good portion of the campaign, the 31-year-old outfielder finished with 13 home runs and 48 RBI while posting a .271/.377/.432 batting line.
Gordon declined his qualifying offer from the Royals on Friday, Jeffrey Flanagan of MLB.com reports. Gordon wasn't expected to accept the offer after declining his player option for the 2016 season, but there's still a chance he signs back on with the defending World Series champions. If he does't, the Royals will receive a draft pick as compensation, as Gordon should generate interest after a year in which he slashed .271/.377/.432 and hit 13 homers.
Gordon was tendered a qualifying offer from the Royals on Thursday. There was zero chance of the Royals not attaching draft compensation to one of their franchise's most beloved players. Fortunately for Gordon, his profile as a free agent is high enough that this shouldn't make a significant impact on his ability to find a team.
Gordon has declined his 2016 player option and will become a free agent. Gordon posted a .836 OPS in a postseason that showcased his late-game heroics, and he'll attempt to carry that momentum into the offseason in search of a large contract. The 31-year-old has posted a batting average of .265 or greater in every season since 2011, and can provide any potential suitor with reliable power numbers while sprinkling in a bit of speed. If he does change destinations, the power numbers could be poised to rise, as he won't be playing half his games within the pitcher-friendly confines of Kauffman Stadium.
Gordon (face) is in the lineup Friday for Game 6 of the ALCS against the Blue Jays, Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star reports. Gordon apparently was hit in the face by a foul ball during batting practice Thursday, but he never seemed to be in any jeopardy to miss Friday's contest. He'll man his usual responsibilities, playing left field and batting eighth.