Kansas City Royals: Ten Worst Contracts in Team History

Ian Kennedy #31 of the Kansas City Royals (Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images)
Ian Kennedy #31 of the Kansas City Royals (Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images) /
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Kansas City Royals
Alex Gordon #4 of the Kansas City Royals (Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images) /

Tenth Worst Contract Ever – Alex Gordon (Royals outfielder from 2007-2020)

People might be surprised to see Alex Gordon this low on the list, but maybe you won’t think it’s as strange when you see the rest of the list. Gordon spent the 2007-2015 seasons with the Royals organization and even went back to the minor leagues in 2010 to learn a new position when his previous one of third base wasn’t really working out for him.

He learned to play left field and the transformation of one Alex Gordon begun. He became a really solid player both offensively and defensively, winning multiple Gold Gloves and looking like the player the Royals spent the No. 2 overall pick on in 2005. This was what the Royals had hoped for when they sent Gordon back down to the minors to learn a new position and it was working.

Gordon helped the team win their first World Series in 30 years and was rewarded for his efforts with the largest contract in franchise history. It was a four-year deal worth $72 million that would take him through the end of the 2019 season with the Royals.

Fans were ecstatic about the contract at the time even though it was a massive deal for a small market team like the Royals. It was definitely a contract rewarding the former first round pick for what he had done for the team rather than for what he would do and that was evident after the first year of the large contract where Gordon batted .220 through 445 at bats.

It didn’t get any better in 2017, as Gordon batted a mere .208 and looked pitiful at the plate. Royals fans were most definitely growing concerned for the former Husker and after a 2019 season where he hit just .245, it seemed apparent that Gordon just didn’t have it anymore. He redeemed himself in the final year of his deal with a .266 batting average and signed a one-year deal to return in 2020.

The original deal Gordon signed in 2016 wasn’t one where the Royals got their money’s worth, but not many fans were angry about the team giving him this kind of contract. Gordon spent his entire career in a Royals uniform and this contract made that possible. It didn’t go according to plan, but considering he returned in 2020 means the deal wasn’t a complete bust.