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09/12/2006 2:40 PM ET
Alex Gordon named Baseball America Minor League Player of the Year
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KANSAS CITY -- Third baseman Alex Gordon, the Royals first round pick and the No. 2 overall selection in the 2005 June Free Agent Draft, was named Baseball America Minor League Player of the Year today. Gordon becomes the first player to follow up a Baseball America College Player of the Year award with the minor league honor in consecutive seasons. Last season, following an outstanding career at the University of Nebraska, Gordon also earned the Golden Spikes Award, the Dick Howser Award, the Brooks Wallace Award and the ABCA Rawlings Player of the Year.

Gordon, who was named Royals Minor League Player of the Year and Texas League Player of the Year, hit .325 with 39 doubles, 29 home runs and 100 RBI. He ranked second among all minor leaguers in total bases (286) and fourth in runs scored (111). Gordon was tied for fourth in slugging percentage (.588), while finishing among the minor league leaders in home runs (tied for eighth) and RBI (tied for 10th). He was one of just five individuals in the U.S. minor league system to record at least 20 homers and 20 stolen bases.

Gordon, 22, made his mark in the second half of the season, helping the Wranglers to the Texas League Championship series. Following the All-Star Game in mid-June, he hit .346 with 20 home runs, 20 doubles, 70 RBI and 65 runs scored in 67 games.

The 6-1, 220-pound native of Lincoln, Neb., joins Tom Gordon (1988) as the only Royals farmhand to earn Baseball America's Player of the Year award since it debuted in 1981. Other notable players who have won the award are Frank Thomas (1990), Manny Ramirez (1993), Derek Jeter (1994), Andruw Jones (1995-96), Eric Chavez (1998), Josh Beckett (2001) and Joe Mauer (2003). Royals' pitcher Zack Greinke won The Sporting News Minor League Player of the Year in 2003, narrowly missing out to Mauer for the Baseball America honor.

Gordon, as well as all of the club's Minor League Player and Pitcher of the Year selections from each affiliate, will attend Royals Futures Day at Kauffman Stadium on Sept. 22 where they will be presented with their awards on the field in a pre-game ceremony at 6:45 p.m. Royals 2006 first-overall pick Luke Hochevar will also be attending. During their visit to Kansas City they will also make a trip to the Negro Leagues Museum at 10 a.m., followed by lunch at George Brett's on the Plaza. They will also be taking time to visit children at Children's Mercy Hospital at 1 p.m. and will be available to sign autographs at Kauffman Stadium from 5:30 to 6 p.m.

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