by John Unrein
A fourth statue should be added to Kauffman Stadium. Currently, Ewing and Muriel Kauffman, George Brett, and Frank White are immortalized in bronze. Alex Gordon deserves to be among their company. Somewhere near left field would be the ideal location at Kauffman Stadium.
Here are the Top 10 reasons why Alex Gordon deserves a statue.
10. Gordon spent his entire 14 year major league career with the Royals after being drafted by them second overall in the first round of the 2005 Major League Baseball draft. The left fielder has embraced Kansas City and is proud to have only put on a Royals jersey.
9. Gordon was a three time American League All-Star selection (2013, 2014, 2015).
8. Seven Rawlings American League Gold Gloves reside on Gordon’s mantle (2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2017, 2018, 2019), including a Platinum Glove for his 2014 campaign. Two Rawlings Platinum Gloves are awarded annually to one player in each league (American and National). Fan voting and the Society for American Baseball Research, or Sabermetrics SDI (SABR Defensive Index) is the criteria used to select the winner for each league. Gordon’s defensive aptitude was the hallmark of his playing career and it garnered him national attention to the point he became a household name.
7. Four times during his career Gordon was in the Top Five in the American League for “Hit By Pitch.” He was first in this category during the 2019 season after being plunked 19 times. Gordon made a habit of standing closer to home plate when he had two strikes against him. The reward was twofold. Inching closer to the dish made it easier for Gordon to reach pitches on the outer half of the plate as well as being plunked if the target was inside or if the baseball got away from the pitcher. Gordon was tough enough to take a base anyway he could.
6. April 26, 2015 was the date of Alex Gordon’s greatest catch in a 5-3 losing effort against the Chicago White Sox. Gordon went on a dead sprint into foul territory in left field at Guaranteed Rate Stadium. The result was Gordon timing his jump over the wall and into the stands two rows deep amongst fans on his way to securing the baseball. Royals announcers Steve Physioc and Rex Hudler compared the feat to something done by Superman.
“When I was going over, I knew when I jumped, I was going into the stands,” Gordon shared in his post-game comments.
“I kind of had an idea of where the fence was and how low it was. I just said I gotta make the catch here and that was it.”
5. Gordon was a solid offensive player for the Royals. He compiled 1,643 base hits (6th all-time for the Royals), 357 doubles (5th all-time for the Royals), 190 home runs (4th all time for the Royals), and 749 Runs Batted In or RBI’s (6th all-time for the Royals).
4. The Fred Hutch Award Luncheon is held annually. The Hutch Award is ranked as one of the top recognitions given to a Major League Baseball Player. It identifies the player who best exemplifies the fighting spirit and competitive desire of Fred Hutchinson, the legendary pitcher and manager who died of cancer at the age of 45. The award was first handed out in 1965. The 2014 recipient was Alex Gordon.
3. Game one of the 2015 World Series saw Alex Gordon tie the game 4-4 in the bottom of the ninth with a home run to straight away center field off a fastball from New York Mets closer Jeurys Familia. It is still to this day one of the biggest clutch hits in team history.
2. Gordon displayed humility in becoming a left fielder after being deemed the franchise’s next George Brett at third base. Following a broken thumb suffered in Spring Training, Gordon began the 2010 season on a minor league rehab assignment with Class-A Advanced Wilmington. Gordon was activated from the disabled list on April 17th. He was demoted to the minors in May, where he started playing left field.
1. Gordon is a class act. Even if you pay close attention, you will not hear negative things about him as a person. Kansas City was blessed to have him share his baseball talent and personal character as a human being with us.