Kansas City Royals: Benching Alex Gordon long overdue

(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

The Kansas City Royals finally have decided to bench left fielder Alex Gordon after the former first round pick has failed to keep his batting average above .200 to this point of the season.

After the 2015 World Series title, the biggest talk amongst all Kansas City Royals fans was what the future of Alex Gordon would look like. Would he be Forever Royal or would he end up heading to a different town and donning a different uniform?

Ned Yost really can’t afford to continue playing Gordon, especially with this team still in contention for the playoffs.

Gordon ended up signing the biggest contract in Kansas City Royals history and… Well, to put it bluntly… The signing has been a complete and total disaster to this point.

In his almost two seasons since signing the big contract, Alex Gordon has not been the same guy that fans came to know and love. Sure his defense has been great, but offensively, Gordon has been terrible.

In 2016, Gordon posted a slash line of .220/.312/.380 in 445 at bats. The Gold Glove outfielder missed a significant amount of time due to an injury he sustained going for a foul ball earlier in the year, but never did get back to his 2015 production.

This season, fans really hoped for Alex Gordon to bounce back, but it hasn’t happened. Before being benched on Tuesday, Gordon was only slashing .197/.286/.294 in 340 at bats. His defense has been the only thing keeping him in the lineup on a daily basis, but even that can’t help Gordon now.

This is a decision that really shouldn’t surprise anyone. The Royals acquired Melky Cabrera a few weeks ago and Jorge Bonifacio has been playing really good baseball during his rookie season. Neither guy should be bumped from the lineup for a struggling Alex Gordon who is batting .197.

Alex Gordon appeared to agree with the decision, telling Rustin Dodd of The Kansas City Star,

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"“Boni is obviously playing well,” Gordon said. “So I’d probably do it if I was the manager, too. I just need to go figure it out and start playing better.”"

Gordon is a smart guy. He knows he isn’t performing well at the plate and hopefully this benching will help him figure out what the issue is offensively.

Royals fans love Alex Gordon, but it’s been really rough watching him sputter at the dish the last two years. Ned Yost really can’t afford to continue playing Gordon, especially with this team still in contention for the playoffs. It’s too critical of a time to be leaving a .197 batter in the lineup.

At the end of the day, Alex Gordon isn’t what he used to be. We’ve witnessed that over the last season and a half, as Gordon just hasn’t seemed to figure out how to hit the baseball.

Could this move push Gordon to end up retiring and getting out of that massive contract? Probably not, but let’s keep our fingers crossed that him being benched leads to something positive for the Kansas City Royals.

Hang in there, Gordo. We’re all pulling for you.