Gordon had a .300/.462/.350 slash line with one home run through 20 at-bats in spring training. The veteran outfielder also had eight strikeouts in 26 plate appearances, but he may have just been shaking off the rust after posting the best strikeout rate (15.8 percent) of his career in 2019. Gordon re-signed with the Royals on a one-year deal in January and is poised to be the team's starter in left field for the 10th straight season.
Gordon agreed Wednesday with the Royals on a one-year, $4 million contract, Jeffrey Flanagan of MLB.com reports. Though Gordon became a free agent when the Royals declined his $23 million option for 2020 earlier this offseason, the three-time All-Star never seemed to seriously entertain continuing his career anywhere other than Kansas City. As anticipated, the 35-year-old will be back with the Royals on a more club-friendly deal after he posted a .741 OPS -- his highest mark since 2015 -- this past season. Gordon can be penciled in as the Royals' Opening Day left fielder, though he may have a shorter leash atop the depth chart than he's enjoyed in previous seasons.
Gordon's $23 million club option for 2020 was declined by the Royals on Thursday, making him a free agent, Jon Heyman of MLB Network reports. Although the team opted to buy Gordon out instead of exercising his option, Heyman reports that the team will attempt to bring him back at a more reasonable rate next season. The 35-year-old recorded a .741 OPS with 76 RBI last year.
Gordon is not in Sunday's lineup against the Twins. Gordon will sit for the first time since Sept. 15. He has hit well over the last week, collecting seven hits in 26 plate appearances, driving in five and scoring three runs. The Royals will start an outfield of Whit Merrifield, Bubba Starling and Ryan McBroom in his place.
Gordon will sit Sunday against the Astros. The Royals will load the lineup with righties against southpaw Wade Miley. Ryan McBroom gets the start in left field.