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Gordon back up for another spell

Gordon back up for another spell

KANSAS CITY -- Third baseman Alex Gordon is back with the Royals after three weeks and 17 games with Triple-A Omaha.

Slow coming around after right hip surgery, he was optioned to Omaha on Aug. 18. The Royals wanted him to improve his timing at the plate because he was hitting just .198.

"It felt pretty good when I left, but just being in the lineup every day helped a little bit and I got a lot of at-bats down there," Gordon said. "So overall I think I feel better than when I left."

For Omaha, Gordon batted .313 (20-for-64) after the option and had two homers, a triple and four doubles with 10 RBIs and 16 runs scored.

"Hopefully that stint in Triple-A helped and hopefully I'll get over the Mendoza Line [.200]," Gordon said. "I was hoping they'd carry over my Triple-A numbers and bring them up here, but I guess they don't let you do that."

His offensive work with Omaha entailed two items.

"Me and Tommy Gregg, the hitting coach at Omaha, were really concentrating on my bat path and my stride direction," he said. "Those were the two things we concentrated on and I think they got better and better in the two or three weeks I was there. He definitely helped me and showed me a couple of things."

Defensively, the Royals wanted him to show more agility at third base, but his time there was limited to nine games because of a stiff right shoulder. He was the designated hitter eight times.

"I played [third base] the other day and it was fine. I've been throwing and everything. It was just them putting me in the DH and wanted me to play there for a little bit," he said.

Now the shoulder is OK. His hip will require no more surgery and feels fine with good strength, Gordon indicated.

After a slow start out of Spring Training, Gordon underwent right hip surgery on April 17 to repair a labral tear. Following an injury rehabilitation tour in the Minors, he returned to the Royals for a month and, in 22 games, batted just .227 (17-for-75) with two homers and eight RBIs.

Because the Royals didn't recall him until Tuesday, Gordon now cannot stay on target to become a free agent after the 2012 season by reaching six years of service time.

That didn't seem to be a big issue with Gordon.

"I talked to my agent a little bit but we didn't get too worked up in it. I think we'll talk more about in the offseason," Gordon said.

He was asked if he saw anything devious about it.

"Obviously I wasn't playing my best baseball and that's what they told me," Gordon said. "They wanted me to go down and work out some kinks, get more swings and hopefully get more comfortable there at third, so that was the whole meeting. Nothing business-like, so as long as they told me that to my face I believe them."

Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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