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Alex Gordon declines $12.5 million player option, joins loaded free agent OF class

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Alex Gordon has, as expected, declined his $12.5 million player option for the 2016 season, the Royals announced Wednesday evening. The 31-year-old outfielder will officially become a free agent on Friday.

Gordon posted a cool .809 OPS (120 OPS+) with 13 home runs and 48 RBI in 104 games this season for the World Series champions while continuing to play elite-level defense in left field. He has averaged a .281/.359/.450 slash line with 18 homers and 72 RBI over the last five seasons and is going on his fifth straight Gold Glove Award.

Gordon should do very well for himself this winter, even on the wrong side of age 30.

We’re looking at a stacked free agent class in the outfield between Gordon, Jason Heyward, Yoenis Cespedes, Justin Upton, and Dexter Fowler.

Colby Rasmus, Denard Span, Austin Jackson, and Gerardo Parra are also available.

Rangers, Padres, White Sox to continue paying minor leaguers

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In March, Major League Baseball agreed to pay minor league players $400 per week while the sport is shut down amid the coronavirus pandemic. That provision is set to expire at the end of May. As Craig noted earlier, the Athletics will not be paying their minor leaguers starting on June 1.

Several teams are doing the right thing, continuing to pay their minor leaguers $400 per week through at least the end of June. Per The Athletic’s Levi Weaver and James Fegan, the Rangers and White Sox will each tack on another month of pay. The Athletic’s Dennis Lin reported earlier that the Padres will pay their players through the end of August. Craig also cited a Baseball America report from this morning, which mentioned that the Marlins will also pay their players through the end of August.

Frankly, if the Marlins can find a way to continue paying their minor league players, then every team should be able to do the same. The Marlins are widely believed to be the least profitable among the 30 major league clubs. Here’s hoping the rest of the league follows the Rangers’, White Sox’s, Padres’, and Marlins’ lead as opposed to the Athletics’.