Dodgers call up Dee Gordon
PHILADELPHIA -- Dee Gordon, one of the top prospects in the Los Angeles Dodgers organization as well as one of the most compelling, has made his way to the major leagues.
The club purchased the contract of the lanky shortstop from its Triple-A Albuquerque affiliate before Monday night's game with the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Gordon entered the game as a pinch runner in the ninth inning and scored the Dodgers' lone run in a 3-1 loss.
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Gordon's promotion was one of four roster moves made by the Dodgers and easily the one that was least expected. What was expected was that pitcher Blake Hawksworth, infielder Juan Uribe and outfielder Marcus Thames all were activated from the 15-day disabled list. To clear roster spots for them and for Gordon, the club designated veterans Jay Gibbons and Juan Castro for assignment and optioned pitcher John Ely and infielder Ivan De Jesus to Albuquerque.
Gordon said he was told of the move Sunday evening by Albuquerque manager Lorenzo Bundy.
"Me and Lorenzo, we talk quite often about the game and how I'm feeling and how I'm playing,'' Gordon said. "He asked me how do I feel I'm playing. I told him I felt like I'm playing pretty well, getting on base, doing what I do to help the team win. He asked me if I was going to the major leagues tomorrow, would I be ready? I told him definitely.
"And then he said, 'OK, you're going to the major leagues tomorrow.'''
Gordon, 23, the son of longtime major league reliever Tom Gordon, was the Dodgers' fourth-round draft pick in 2008 and immediately became one of their most highly anticipated prospects. Although he is listed as 5-foot-11 and weighs just 150 pounds, he is an electrifying player with blinding speed. He was hitting .315 for the Isotopes, with a .361 on-base percentage and 22 stolen bases.
Gordon said his father was flying up from Orlando, Fla., for his debut.
Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti said he would have preferred to wait to bring up Gordon, but that the latest injury to shortstop Rafael Furcal, which resulted in far more playing time than was originally intended for utilitymen Jamey Carroll and Aaron Miles, basically necessitated the move.
"He has the tools right now to play at the big league level,'' Colletti said. "With Raffy out for another two weeks, three weeks, four weeks, whatever it turns out to be, we needed to add somebody who could play a lot of shortstop. Jamey Carroll and Miles have been great (but) we think we're a better club with the versatility and the added talent from Dee.
"Would this be better in September or next year? Maybe, maybe not. But we don't have that luxury with the injuries we have had or as many times as we have lost Raffy.''
Gordon's defense at shortstop was shaky early in the season, but it has gotten much better over the past month.
"He is so fast, and sometimes the game gets faster the higher up you go,'' Colletti said. "He sometimes seemed to be trying to match the speed of the game, which made him a little overanxious. When it's a tough play, he will dazzle you. But sometimes when it's a really simple play, he struggles."
Tony Jackson covers the Dodgers for ESPNLosAngeles.com.