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Sub-state basketball pairings -2/26/2015, 10:37 AM

3-2-1A wrestling -- Younger part of youth movement for Railers -2/26/2015, 10:48 AM

Big 12 reprimands K-State after court-storming -2/26/2015, 10:53 AM

Hays High's top four headed to Salina -2/26/2015, 10:36 AM

3-2-1A wrestling -- HDN area state qualifiers -2/26/2015, 10:48 AM

3-2-1A wrestling -- Porsch seeks a repeat in state finale -2/26/2015, 10:49 AM

3-2-1A wrestling -- Freshman Hutchinson leads young group of Redmen -2/26/2015, 10:49 AM

3-2-1A wrestling -- Norton steps up again to have shot at 3-2-1A state crown -2/26/2015, 10:50 AM

Shockers fight past Indiana State, set up big Saturday -2/26/2015, 10:27 AM

Rhoades back at state -- this time in 4A -2/26/2015, 10:36 AM

TMP survives Plainville -2/25/2015, 11:26 AM

K-State issues apology -2/25/2015, 10:22 AM

HHS swept at Dodge -2/25/2015, 10:22 AM

Tuesday's area prep basketball boxscores -2/25/2015, 10:21 AM

Royals still hoping for Starling to break out -2/24/2015, 10:22 AM

Penske revels in Logano's victory at Daytona 500 -2/24/2015, 10:22 AM

Wildcat's win throws a roadblock at Jayhawks -2/24/2015, 10:22 AM

KBCA prep basketball rankings, Feb. 23 -2/24/2015, 10:22 AM

Wildcats get it done -2/24/2015, 10:22 AM

No-name Hahn wins Northern Trust Open -2/23/2015, 10:24 AM

FHSU softball splits on Sunday in Minnesota -2/23/2015, 10:15 AM

Logano wins first Daytona 500 -2/23/2015, 10:15 AM

Lutz: VanVleet has another day to remember -2/23/2015, 10:14 AM

VanVleet takes Wichita State's assists title in win -2/23/2015, 10:14 AM

'Cats seek confidence before game with KU -2/23/2015, 10:14 AM

Perry Ellis, No. 8 Kansas rebound from loss, beat TCU -2/22/2015, 12:47 PM

Baylor drills K-State -2/22/2015, 12:48 PM

Monarch girls run away from Stockton -2/22/2015, 12:38 PM

TMP wins physical game at Stockton -2/22/2015, 12:39 PM

Mathews all-state for HHS -2/22/2015, 12:48 PM

HHS wins at Garden, jumps back into WAC race -2/22/2015, 12:41 PM

Wrestling roundup -- Hays High sends four to 4A state -2/22/2015, 8:19 PM

Victoria puts together complete game in win at Ness City -2/22/2015, 12:40 PM

HHS girls fall down early, lose at Garden -2/22/2015, 12:39 PM

Earnhardt Jr. makes Duel history, Patrick qualifies -2/20/2015, 10:19 AM

HHS sends relays to state -2/20/2015, 10:19 AM

Tiger baseball takes two from UCM -2/20/2015, 10:19 AM

Gene Stephenson says he's filed his own appeal -2/19/2015, 10:13 AM

TCU takes out K-State -2/19/2015, 10:13 AM

Bohuslavsky keys win for Tiger women -2/19/2015, 10:59 AM

Tiger men rally for MIAA win -2/19/2015, 10:13 AM

Tiger women No. 1 in Central Region -2/18/2015, 5:04 PM

Tuesday's area prep basketball boxscores -2/18/2015, 11:22 AM

Barton's Hensley named Player of the Week -2/18/2015, 10:24 AM

TMP boys win, girls fall in Great Bend -2/18/2015, 10:24 AM

K-State hopes to build some momentum at TCU -2/18/2015, 10:24 AM

Two in a row for HHS girls -2/18/2015, 10:47 AM

Hot early, HHS boys get win at Abilene -2/18/2015, 10:47 AM

All is possible at Daytona -2/17/2015, 10:27 AM

WVU tops Jayhawks in wild finish -2/17/2015, 10:27 AM

Chiefs can find impact receiver in NFL draft -2/17/2015, 10:27 AM

Chargers set sights on LA, push San Diego officials for action on stadium -2/17/2015, 10:27 AM

Defense a constant for Shockers -2/17/2015, 10:26 AM

FHSU, UCM series moved to Hays -2/16/2015, 10:55 AM

KU prepares for full-court press -2/16/2015, 10:17 AM

Foster lifts Kansas State past Oklahoma on Saturday -2/16/2015, 10:16 AM

Three Tigers crowned MIAA champs -2/16/2015, 10:16 AM

Bowyer, after crash, slams qualifying format -2/16/2015, 10:16 AM

Phillipsburg girls knock off TMP at the buzzer -2/15/2015, 7:54 PM

Hays High girls snap losing skid -2/15/2015, 2:21 PM

Hays High stunned by Liberal at the buzzer -2/15/2015, 7:54 PM

Tiger women's streak halted at Pitt State -2/15/2015, 10:26 AM

Tiger softball 1-3 to start season -2/15/2015, 7:54 PM

Tiger men fall at Pitt -2/15/2015, 7:54 PM

Tigers drop to 0-2 with losses to Mines, Regis -2/15/2015, 1:10 AM

KU coach kicks off tour in Hays -2/13/2015, 11:10 AM

K-State guard Johnson laughs off hecklers at W. Virginia -2/13/2015, 10:13 AM

The Tigers' do-it-all Shaw -2/13/2015, 11:10 AM

Samac staying on court, providing big games for Tigers -2/13/2015, 11:09 AM

Wichita State baseball players see winning as antidote to distractions -2/13/2015, 10:12 AM

Royals, Herrera agree -2/13/2015, 10:12 AM

Royals purchase contract of Derek Gordon -2/13/2015, 10:12 AM

KU's Ellis near 1,000 points -2/13/2015, 10:12 AM

Hoxies' record just a matter of time? -2/12/2015, 3:26 PM

New coach, new season for FHSU softball -2/12/2015, 11:25 AM

Tigers look for better pitching in 2015 -2/12/2015, 10:14 AM

Shox roll to win -2/12/2015, 10:04 AM

Kansas State rally again falls short at W. Virginia -2/12/2015, 10:04 AM

FHSU wrestling rolls to dual win -2/12/2015, 10:04 AM

2015 Eight-Man All-Star rosters -2/11/2015, 11:54 AM

Indiana State backcourt thrives with new characters -2/11/2015, 10:24 AM

Scott City rolls over TMP -2/11/2015, 10:24 AM

Jayhawks cruise past Texas Tech -2/11/2015, 10:24 AM

Kansas State braces for Mountaineers' full-court press -2/11/2015, 10:24 AM

Salina Central outlasts Hays High -2/11/2015, 10:24 AM

Tigers' Lehman earns seventh MIAA honor -2/9/2015, 1:56 PM

FHSU's Samac earns MIAA men's honor -2/9/2015, 1:56 PM

KBCA rankings, Feb. 9 -2/9/2015, 1:47 PM

Big day for Plainville grad Dani Winters -2/9/2015, 11:24 AM

Cowboys' Forte plays through flu -2/9/2015, 10:17 AM

At KU, Smith played on scout team -2/9/2015, 10:16 AM

North Carolina coaching icon Dean Smith dies at 83 -2/8/2015, 5:19 PM

Wichita State easily beats weakened Missouri State -2/8/2015, 4:52 PM

FHSU men hold off Hornets -2/8/2015, 8:58 PM

TMP's Rhoades third in Phillipsburg -2/8/2015, 8:58 PM

TMP girls win 13th straight -2/8/2015, 8:58 PM

Defense lifts TMP boys past Norton -2/8/2015, 8:58 PM

La Crosse boys nab big road win -2/8/2015, 8:58 PM

Hays High's Hannah Hearld will miss softball season -2/8/2015, 12:46 PM

Tiger women outlast ESU for 21st straight win -2/8/2015, 1:13 PM

Sports Scores

Tuesday

Prep basketball

Boys

Atwood 76, St. Francis 65

Dighton 62, Oberlin 47

Hillsboro 50, Goodland 47

Lakeside 42, Lincoln 32

Minneapolis 68, Russell 35

Rock Hills 42, Natoma 37

Salina Central 62, Andover 58

Salina South 62, Sacred Heart 47

Sharon Springs 75, Leoti 38

St. John's Beloit-Tipton 57, Osborne 34

Sylvan-Lucas 61, Thunder Ridge 48

Girls

Dighton 44, Atwood 11

Dodge City 71, Hays High 28

Hesston 51, Goodland 18

Hoisington 60, Victoria 46

Hoxie 65, St. Francis 13

Lincoln 33, Lakeside 26

Minneapolis 47, Otis-Bison 24

Osborne 59, Wilson 34

Sharon Springs 63, Oberlin 42

Sylvan-Lucas 43, Natoma 41 (ot)

Tescott 41, Rock Hills 33

Trego 56, Leoti 27

Thunder Ridge 33, St. John's Beloit-Tipton 30

Click To View All


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SPOTLIGHT
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Gordon says he will delay free agency, despite rising stock

Published on -8/24/2014, 6:10 PM

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By Andy McCullough

McClatchy-Tribune

On his first day as a Kansas City Royal, Josh Willingham leaned back in a clubhouse chair and took in his surroundings. Across the room, a group of reporters ringed a corner locker. Willingham turned to new teammate Danny Duffy and asked about the status of the locker's inhabitant.

"So Alex Gordon," Willingham said to Duffy, "he's like the face of the franchise?"

Duffy nodded. By now, the secret is out. Sports Illustrated profiled Gordon last week. He earned his second All-Star selection last month. He has barged into the conversation for American League MVP. His fourth Gold Glove appears assured. He is the mild-mannered leader of a first-place club and general manager Dayton Moore's organizational paragon.

Gordon, 30, might also become the litmus test for the organization's spending capability. His emergence on the national stage coincides with an upcoming opportunity to be compensated as a cornerstone.

He can become a free agent after next season, as long as he declines his $13.25 million player option for 2016. Gordon would enter the open market at a time of unprecedented wealth around the game. His next contract should far surpass his current four-year, $37.25 million pact. To lock him down, the Royals would have to offer the sort of deal they have never before given out. His price could approach nine figures, rival officials say.

For his part, Gordon indicated he plans on picking up his 2016 option and delaying his free agency. A message left for Gordon's agent, Casey Close, went unreturned, so Gordon was asked if Close would approve this maneuver.

"Casey's not the boss of me," Gordon said with a grin. "I'm sure he'll have things to say and whatnot. But when it comes down to it, it's my decision."

The appropriate setting for a long-term extension, for the chance to grant Gordon his desire to become a Royal for life, would be next spring. The two sides have not engaged in any discussions, according to people familiar with the situation. Moore insisted the situation had yet to appear on his radar, and quipped his baseball operations department is "not as forward-thinking in baseball as you members of the media think we are."

The K.C. Star polled a group of big-league executives and talent evaluators to measure Gordon's value. The consensus was he could command a five-year deal after 2015 worth somewhere between $75 million and $95 million.

One executive guessed the bidding might approach the seven-year, $130 million contract given to Shin-Soo Choo this past winter.

One dissenter projected a deal around four years and $52 million. Gordon, the talent evaluator explained, is a "tough guy to gauge since so much value is wrapped up in defense at a non-premium position." Another scout disagreed, setting a five-year, $75 million deal as "the floor," unless Gordon takes a "hometown discount."

Gordon accepted something resembling a bargain during his first round of negotiation. In the spring of 2012, he instructed Close to strike a fair deal for both sides, and not to bother him with the particulars.

"I made it well-known that I wanted to be in Kansas City," Gordon said. "And he knew that. It got to a point where I was like, 'You can always try to keep going higher and higher (in salary).' I was like 'You know what? That's fine. Let's just get this taken care of.'"

Even if Gordon reprises this strategy, potentially leaving millions on the table to remain a Royal, his contract would reach unprecedented heights for this franchise. The largest commitments in club history a pair of five-year, $55 million deals, one for Mike Sweeney and another for Gil Meche.

The situation creates a potential headache for a club already facing a busy offseason. The Royals must decide whether to part ways with Billy Butler. They must solve the $15 million riddle of Wade Davis and Greg Holland. They must find a replacement for James Shields, locate a new right fielder and dole out half a dozen raises in arbitration.

At this point, as they vie for their first playoff berth in 29 seasons, the Royals have yet to discuss Gordon's status in detail, Moore said. They have budgeted for him to be on their roster in 2016. But Moore declined to say whether he expected Gordon would pick up that option.

"I haven't given any of those things any thought," Moore said. "I'd just be talking off the top of my head. I would just be talking just random thoughts right now.

"I mean, Alex Gordon, he's a terrific player. He's a terrific person, an incredible talent. What's he's went through and what's he accomplished is one of the most memorable and greatest things that I've seen and been a part of in sports."

A first-round pick in 2005, Gordon received a demotion to the minors, suffered injuries and converted to left field before emerging as a star in 2011. He now serves as the team's defensive cornerstone, a sabermetric darling in the outfield.

Gordon represents a litmus test for the financial value of advanced statistics. He lacks an eye-popping offensive resume. He has hit 20 homers in a season twice. He has never driven in more than 87 runs. His on-base plus slugging percentage since 2011 heading into this weekend is .815, about 22 percent better than league average, but far from elite.

Yet other metrics adore him. Gordon led all position players in FanGraphs' version of wins above replacement as of Friday, a nudge ahead of Angels superstar Mike Trout. Since 2011, Gordon ranks sixth among position players in the statistic, which compares a player's overall production to that of a Class AAA substitute.

Consider how Gordon compares with a player like Hunter Pence, a 31-year-old right fielder. San Francisco inked him to a five-year, $90 million deal that began this season. During the past four seasons, Pence has hit 19 more homers than Gordon and driven in 59 more runs.

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