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Rockies Select Tanner Gordon

The Rockies select the right-hander’s contract Tanner Gordon, according to Luke Zahlmann of the Denver Gazette. Gordon will start the team’s game against the Royals this afternoon in his MLB debut. The Rockies will need to do the same to make room for Gordon on the roster, but a 40-man move won’t be necessary because of the cap space the club has in the backfield. Elehuris Montero he was assigned a job last week.

Gordon, 26, was a sixth-round pick by the Braves in the 2019 draft who joined the Rockies as part of the trade. Pierce Johnson trade last summer for the righty Victor Vodnik. Gordon struggled badly at the Triple-A level in Atlanta at the time of the trade, with an 8.28 ERA in 29 1/3 innings of work, but looked his best in six starts against Colorado. In those 31 1/3 frames of work, Gordon posted a 4.31 ERA while striking out 24.1% of the batters he faced and walking 7.1%.

Those strong results gave reason to hope that Gordon could contribute to the majors in 2024, but the Rockies opted to leave the righty off their 40-man roster this winter. Fortunately for them, Gordon went unselected in the Rule 5 Draft back in December and reported to Triple-A for the 2024 campaign. The righty’s seven starts this year have not been as productive as his time in the organization last season. In 33 2/3 innings of work at Triple-A this year, Gordon struggled to a 5.35 ERA while striking out a remarkable 18.5% of the batters he faced. While his 5.5% walk rate is impressive, Gordon’s dip in strikeouts and declining production are both cause for concern.

Those potential issues won’t stop the Rockies from giving Gordon a big-league-level feel in his starting lineup today. The righty’s first assignment in the majors will be a tough one, as he will be facing a Royals club that entered an unexpected rivalry this year while playing his first game at Coors Field. Gordon will be taking the ball in place of the right winger Ryan Feltner, which was supposed to start today. It is not yet clear if Gordon is simply making the start to give the club’s regular starters more rest or if he will play permanently in the club’s rotation, although there are rumors surrounding Feltner, Cal Quantrillagain Austin Gomber it’s possible that a trade could open up a permanent spot in Gordon’s rotation in the coming weeks.

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