After the Dodgers’ starting shortstop, Rafael Furcal, went to the disabled list, the Dodgers called up Dee Gordon on June 6 from Triple-A Albuquerque to take over his services until further notice. Gordon’s performance was so impressive that the Dodgers organization never took their eyes off of the youngster.
Furcal returned to the lineup in July, sending Gordon back down to Triple A for a short period of time. Gordon’s teammates encouraged him to keep his head up and continue to work hard and he would eventually return to the big leagues. “All he needs to do is continue to work hard,” Matt Kemp said. “He’ll be back before the season is over.”
Kemp was right; Furcal was traded to St. Louis and Gordon was called back up and promoted to the shortstop position full-time for the Los Angeles Dodgers on Aug. 6. The lightweight 23-year-old is already a fan favorite in Southern California. With all the hype surrounding Gordon, he is already being called the best all-around athlete in the business with tremendous talent.
The transition from the minors to the majors is very difficult. You will face different pitching and play against more experienced players that are much smarter about the game of baseball. But when I spoke to Gordon in the clubhouse before Saturday’s game, he didn’t seem to be intimidated by the 95 mph balls coming his way on the big field. “There really isn’t a transition for me,” Gordon said. “My work ethic will remain the same.”
Gordon’s game is very versatile. He can run, hit, steal bases, and make you look like you are not doing your job. On top of that, you can look forward to his flashy plays on defense. When he played in the minors he had less than 35 defensive errors. After playing only two years in the Triple A, his stats were solid. During his stint in the minors, he had over 60 stolen bases and hit over .300. Gordon was also selected to play in the 2011 All-Star Future Game, which is an annual baseball exhibition game played by the top minor league prospects and played right before the Major League Baseball All-Star Game.
Gordon is currently on the 15-day disabled list after suffering from a minor right shoulder injury, after trying to run down a play on defense. But don’t worry, the stud has already started participating in workouts with the team even though he’s not due back until Aug. 25.
The Dodgers have a prematurely talented roster: Kemp, Andre Ethier, Clayton Kershaw and now Gordon. Having young players that would bring excitement back to the ballpark could possibly strike a match with the fan base. Los Angeles fans will support their team if they start to win games. In the clubhouse on Saturday before the game, Kemp talked about how joyous he was to play at home in front of Dodger fans. “We have the best fans in baseball,” Kemp said. “I just want to win games and fill up the stadium again.”