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Corey Seager named 2016 National League Rookie of the Year

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No surprises here. Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager was named the 2016 National League Rookie of the Year by the Baseball Writers Association of America. He’s the first Dodger to win the award since Todd Hollandsworth in 1996. (Fun fact: Hollandsworth was the fifth consecutive Dodger rookie to win the award, following Hideo Nomo, Raul Mondesi, Mike Piazza, and Eric Karros. Mondesi and Piazza won unanimously.) Seager is the first shortstop to win the NL ROY since Hanley Ramirez in 2006.

Seager, 22, dazzled in his first full season, batting .308/.365/.512 with 26 home runs, 72 RBI, and 105 runs scored in 687 plate appearances, helping the Dodgers reach the NLCS. Corey, the brother of Mariners third baseman Kyle Seager, was drafted by the Dodgers 18th overall in the first round of the 2012 draft.

Nationals outfielder Trea Turner finished in second place in Rookie of the Year balloting followed by Dodgers starter Kenta Maeda in third place. Rockies shortstop Trevor Story was fourth, followed by Cardinals shortstop Aledmys Diaz, Rockies starter Jon Gray, Mets starter Steven Matz, and Cardinals reliever Seung Hwan Oh.

Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant won the NL ROY unanimously last year.

Royals outfielder Gordon to retire after 14 seasons

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Kansas City Royals outfielder Alex Gordon, the former first-round pick whose rollercoaster career took him from near bust to All-Star and Gold Glove winner, announced Thursday he will retire after the season.

Gordon was the second overall pick in the 2005 first-year player draft following a standout career at Nebraska, where he won the Golden Spikes Award as the best amateur in baseball. He made his big league debut two years later and, after a few years shuttling back and forth to the minors, moved from third base to the outfield and finally found success.

He wound up playing his entire 14-year career in Kansas City, joining only George Brett and Frank White as position players with that much longevity with the franchise. He heads into a weekend four-game series against Detroit with the third-most walks (682), fourth-most homers (190), fifth-most doubles (357) and sixth-most games played (1,749) in club history.

The three-time All-Star also holds the dubious distinction of being the Royals’ career leader in getting hit by pitches.

While he never quite hit with the kind of average the Royals hoped he would, Gordon did through sheer grit turn himself into one of the best defensive players in the game. He is the only outfielder to earn seven Gold Gloves in a nine-year span, a number that trails only White’s eight for the most in franchise history, and there are enough replays of him crashing into the outfield wall at Kauffman Stadium or throwing out a runner at the plate to run for hours.

Gordon won the first of three defensive player of the year awards in 2014, when he helped Kansas City return to the World Series for the first time since its 1985 championship. The Royals wound up losing to the Giants in a seven-game thriller, but they returned to the Fall Classic the following year and beat the Mets in five games to win the World Series.

It was during the 2015 that Gordon hit one of the iconic homers in Royals history. His tying shot off Mets closer Jeurys Familia in Game 1 forced extra innings, and the Royals won in 14 to set the tone for the rest of the World Series.

Gordon signed a one-year contract to return this season, and he never considered opting out when the coronavirus pandemic caused spring training to be halted and forced Major League Baseball to play a dramatically reduced 60-game schedule.

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