This most confounding of all free agent markets now has one fewer big name with the news that Alex Gordon is returning to the Kansas City Royals on a reported, four-year $72 million contract.
The World Series champs have never been a big spender, and the deal apparently includes deferred money.
Earlier this offseason, the Orioles kicked the tires on Gordo, who as a left-handed hitting left fielder with strong on-base numbers would have checked off a lot of boxes.
The Orioles are hoping they got the same values at a much more inexpensive price with South Korean Hyun Soo Kim.
With Gordon now off the market at a price much less than was generally predicted, even more attention will turn to the Orioles pursuit of Chris Davis.
If the Orioles had signed Gordon, presumably they wouldn’t have had the money to re-sign Davis, too. Interestingly, Gordon is presumably thought to have given the Royals, with whom he has played throughout his career, a hometown discount. Davis is obviously not as eager to grant one.
Besides Davis, Yoenis Cespedes and Justin Upton remain on the market, and like the Orioles slugger, there has been remarkably little chatter about suitors for them.
With spring training now just about six weeks away, there should be some movement on these names as well as marquee pitchers Wei-Yin Chen, Yovani Gallardo and Ian Kennedy.
The Orioles hope they’ll be involved.