The Giants and Royals were scouting Jeff Samardzija last night

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Hank Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle and Jon Morosi of Fox are reporting that the Giants and Royals each had a “high-level scout” evaluating Jeff Samardzija’s start Tuesday in Miami.

The Giants have been mentioned as a suitor for Samardzija, and a lot of speculation — based mostly on the teams’ needs, not actual intelligence — has the Orioles and Blue Jays interested, but the Royals are new. I guess ripping off two or three great weeks of baseball and jumping into first place makes you a buyer. Imagine.

As we noted yesterday, the Cubs recently reached out to Samardzija with a new offer on a possible contract extension, but it’s doubtful anything will happen there. He likely wants Matt Cain money — something north of $120 million — and the Cubs are highly unlikely to pay that.

Royals, Alex Gordon close to contract agreement

Alex Gordon
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MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan reports that the Royals and outfielder Alex Gordon are “getting close” to an agreement on a one-year contract. Terms of the deal aren’t yet known, but the Royals could make it official within the next few days.

Gordon, who turns 36 years old next month, hit .266/.345/.396 with 13 home runs and 76 RBI over 633 plate appearances with the Royals this past season. His offense has waned, owning an adjusted OPS of 84 since 2016 (100 is average), but he still plays decent defense.

Gordon has spent all 13 years of his major league career with the Royals. With the club in a rebuilding phase, he will serve as the clubhouse leader and be a mentor to younger players on the roster.