Opinion

Alex Gordon’s pledge to Urban Youth Academy is $750,000

Sam Mellinger: What Alex Gordon has meant to the Kansas City Royals

Star sports columnist Sam Mellinger talks about Alex Gordon's impact on the Royals baseball team since he was signed in 2005. In Gordon's first year, the team lost 106 games.
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Star sports columnist Sam Mellinger talks about Alex Gordon's impact on the Royals baseball team since he was signed in 2005. In Gordon's first year, the team lost 106 games.

The idea, Alex Gordon says, was broached near the final stages of his contract negotiations this offseason. As the Royals and Gordon completed a four-year, $72 million deal that will keep him Kansas City through 2019, general manager Dayton Moore approached Gordon about something that was in the works in Kansas City.

Moore and the Royals are spearheading a project to build a new Urban Youth Academy in Kansas City. Gordon pledged support to the project almost immediately.

Gordon’s donation will be $750,000. He joins catcher Salvador Perez and right-hander Chris Young as Royals players who have pledged money to the project.

“It came up as we finished the contract,” Gordon said. “I know it’s a project Dayton really cares about.”

Gordon added: “I know there’s a few of us (who have donated). Hopefully we can get more.”

Gordon’s donation came a few months before Perez and the Royals agreed on a five-year, $52 million contract extension earlier this month. He joked that Perez, who has pledged $1 million, has now bested him in the donation category.

“I was first,” Gordon said. “Salvy topped me.”

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On the field, Gordon is enjoying a low-stress spring training after spending much of last year rehabbing from a wrist injury. He entered Wednesday 1 for 10 at the plate, including a three-strikeout day against the Cubs on Monday. The early rust, Gordon said, is just part of the spring process.

“I had a rough day the other day,” Gordon said. “But sometimes those rough days are the best thing for you. You can figure out what you need to work on.”

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