Alex Gordon: 2011 MLB Fantasy Baseball Sleeper Alert

Andrew SwansonContributor IIMarch 29, 2011

SURPRISE, AZ - FEBRUARY 23:  Alex Gordon #4 of the Kansas City Royals poses for a portrait during Spring Training Media Day on February 23, 2011 at Surprise Stadium in Surprise, Arizona..  (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)
Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images

Success is not something that comes quickly for most major league baseball players. While there are a few exceptions to the rule, like Buster Posey and Jason Heyward, most major league players spend the early stages of their careers learning how to play in the big leagues. In some cases, prospects struggle to a point in which they are almost out of baseball before something clicks inside and they begin to play at a high level. 

After a lackluster four-year career that culminated with a change of position and demotion to the minor leagues, Alex Gordon is looking to finally make good on his promising career as the starting left-fielder for the Kansas City Royals. 

Gordon was drafted second overall in the 2005 amateur draft after a highly successful college career at the University of Nebraska. In his first full professional season with the double-A Wichita Wranglers, Gordon hit 29 home runs and stole 20 bases. Unfortunately, his excellent play did not continue with the Royals, as he failed to hit more than 16 home runs in a season and has a putrid .244 career batting average. 

Although spring training numbers can sometimes be misleading and one should not read too much into them, Gordon’s scorching .353 average this spring is something to keep an eye on.  In addition to hitting six homers and driving in 23 runs, Gordon also earned 12 walks in 23 games, shedding light on the possibility that he may finally be maturing at the plate. 

With the new season just a few days away and as the final fantasy baseball drafts commence across the country, the new and re-focused Alex Gordon may be an excellent late-round sleeper in AL-only and deep mixed leagues. He is worthy of a Mr. Irrelevant late round flyer, as he has the physical ability to be a 20-20 player.   


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