The city of Kansas City and Royals fans everywhere breathed a sigh of relief yesterday as it was announced that Alex Gordon has re-signed with the Kansas City Royals. The contract is heavily backloaded, paying Alex Gordon just $12 million in 2016, actually representing a paycut from his $12.5 million 2015 salary. Gordon will earn $16 million in 2017, and $20 million in each of 2018 and 2019. There is a $23 million mutual option for 2020 with a $4 million buyout. If he is traded, the $4 million buyout becomes a trade bonus. After 2017, Alex Gordon will also receive "10/5 rights", given to all players who have spent ten years in the big leagues, the last five with the same team. Those rights allow him to block any trade.
In his press conference, Alex Gordon cited the strength of the organization as a reason for returning to Kansas City. He addressed Dayton Moore as his "good friend", saying he appreciates his honesty and communication, and that everyone in the clubhouse respects Dayton. He said he was not concerned about his legacy, but it did mean a lot to play for one team in his career. Alex said that his "heart has been...and always will be in Kansas City."
"At the end of the day, my heart has been & always will be in Kansas City." Watch: https://t.co/4gtmR5OOEj pic.twitter.com/rdHLWJIWxH— Royals (@Royals) January 7, 2016
Alex admitted the market had been slow, but things had heated up between him and the Royals in the last week. He declined to say which clubs had been pursuing him, saying his heart was always in Kansas City. He addressed the unique nature of his backloaded contract by saying that was specifically done to allow the team to obtain another piece and remain competitive.
Dayton Moore praised Alex's development as a player and stressed the need for patience when developing players, especially since Alex's road to stardom came with bumps along the way. He sidestepped questions as to whether the Royals would pursue a pitcher, but said he would "massage" the roster and make adjustments when necessary.
Following the press conference, Alex called in to 610 KCSP and mentioned what a relief it was to have the process over. He said he was moved by the things written about him in Kansas City over the winter and laughed that someone bought him lunch at Barley's that day, citing the terrific fans. Alex said he tried to imagine himself in different jerseys as he negotiated with clubs, but said it felt "kinda weird" and he "should be naked instead." Gordon also admitted he allowed himself to eat pizza and french fries after the World Series.
"My heart was here and this is where I wanted to be. I'm happy." -Alex pic.twitter.com/dhAeIezACo— Royals (@Royals) January 6, 2016