Strange-Gordon with the Seattle Mariners in 2018
|Seattle Mariners – No. 9|
|Second baseman / Shortstop / Outfielder|
|Born: April 22, 1988|
|June 6, 2011, for the Los Angeles Dodgers|
|MLB statistics |
(through September 7, 2020)
|Runs batted in||232|
|Career highlights and awards|
Devaris "Dee" Strange-Gordon (born April 22, 1988) is an American professional baseball second baseman, shortstop, and center fielder for the Seattle Mariners of Major League Baseball (MLB). He previously played for the Los Angeles Dodgers and Miami Marlins. With the Dodgers, Strange-Gordon was primarily a shortstop and second baseman, and with the Marlins, he was primarily a second baseman. He began playing center field in 2018 with the Mariners. In 2015, in his first season with the Marlins, Strange-Gordon hit .333 with a total of 205 hits and stole 58 bases. He led the NL in all three categories and became the first player to lead the National League in both batting average and stolen bases since fellow second baseman Jackie Robinson in 1949. Through the 2010s, Strange-Gordon stole 330 bases, the most of any player.
Strange-Gordon was born in Windermere, Florida, the son of former Major League pitcher Tom Gordon and Devona Denise Strange. His parents were high-school sweethearts but did not marry; Tom had relationships with three other women as well and had a total of five children, all in Florida. Dee is his second-oldest. When Dee was seven years old in 1995, his mother Devona was shot to death by a subsequent boyfriend who claimed that she was shot as they played with a loaded gun. The boyfriend pleaded no contest to manslaughter and was sentenced to five years in prison.  Tom Gordon sued for custody of Dee and raised him with the help of his own mother, Dee's grandmother.
Strange-Gordon's full name is Devaris Strange-Gordon. Friends and family call him Varis. He was known professionally by his full name until 2008 when a Missoula Osprey public address announcer mispronounced his first and last names. He thereafter chose to be known professionally simply as Dee Gordon. In 2020, he stated that he would like to return to being known by his legal surname professionally, to honor his mother.
Prep and college
Despite being Tom Gordon's son, the younger Gordon did not take up baseball until his high school years, having previously dedicated himself to basketball. He received a scholarship offer to play college basketball for the Louisville Cardinals.
Gordon played baseball at Avon Park High School (like his father), Seminole Community College, and Southeastern University, all in central Florida. He was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the fourth round of the 2008 Major League Baseball Draft.
In 2008, with the Ogden Raptors of the Pioneer League, he hit .331 in 60 games. With the Great Lakes Loons in 2009, Gordon hit .301 and stole 73 bases. He appeared in the Midwest League All-Star Game, was named the league's most valuable player, selected to its mid-season and post-season All-Star teams, and selected as its "Prospect of the year". The Dodgers also selected him as their "Minor League Player of the Year".
In 2010, he was with the Chattanooga Lookouts in the Double-A Southern League and was selected to represent the Lookouts in the All-Star game but was unable to play because he was also selected to the All-Star Futures Game. He hit .277 in 133 games in 2010, while stealing 53 bases and committing 37 errors. He played for Gigantes de Carolina in the Puerto Rico Baseball League after the season. He was assigned to the AAA Albuquerque Isotopes at the start of 2011.
Los Angeles Dodgers
At the start of 2011, Gordon was the Dodgers' best prospect according to Baseball America. After an injury to shortstop Rafael Furcal, the Dodgers purchased Gordon's contract on June 6, 2011 and he made his major league debut in the top of the ninth as a pinch runner against the Philadelphia Phillies that night, and scored a run. His father was in attendance. The next day, in his first start, he had hits in his first three major league at bats and had a stolen base. In a game against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on July 1, Gordon stole second, third, and home in the same inning. He became the first Dodger player since Harvey Hendrick in 1928 and the first Major Leaguer since Jayson Werth on May 12, 2009 to accomplish that feat. Gordon appeared in 56 games for the Dodgers, hitting .304 with 24 stolen bases. He also stole 30 bases for the Isotopes, giving him a total of 54 between the majors and the minors in 2011. In just 56 games for the Dodgers, Gordon's 24 stolen bases were tied for the most by a rookie during the 2011 season. He was selected to the Topps All-Star Rookie team.
Gordon hit his first career home run on May 1, 2012, leading off the game against Jhoulys Chacín of the Colorado Rockies. On June 1, 2012, Gordon was part of a Dodgers lineup that featured the sons of five former Major Leaguers (along with Tony Gwynn, Jr., Iván DeJesús, Jr., Jerry Hairston, Jr. and Scott Van Slyke). This was the first time in Major League history that this had occurred. It was also the first time a starting infield of four major league sons had ever occurred: first baseman Van Slyke, second baseman Hairston, third baseman De Jesus and shortstop Gordon. Gordon was leading the league in stolen bases when he tore the UCL in his right thumb on a successful steal of third base on July 4 against the Cincinnati Reds. He did not rejoin the club until September 11, by which time the club had acquired Hanley Ramírez to play shortstop. With his starting spot gone, Gordon was relegated to a pinch running role the remainder of the season. Overall, in 2012, he played in 87 games and hit .228 with 32 steals. After the season, he played for the Tigres del Licey in the Dominican Winter League.
He began 2013 back in AAA with the Isotopes and was called up to the Dodgers on May 4 after an injury to Ramírez. He played in 19 games, during which he hit a poor .175, and was optioned back to AAA. He rejoined the Dodgers late in the season and was used primarily as a pinch runner. He stole 10 bases in 12 attempts for the Dodgers in 2013 while hitting .231 in 38 games. Later in the season, the Isotopes started playing Gordon at second base and he played center field in the Dominican Winter League in an attempt to improve his versatility.
Gordon beat out Alex Guerrero to become the Dodgers starting second baseman for the 2014 season. He hit .301 in the first half of the season, while leading the league in triples (9) and steals (42) and he was selected to the National League squad at the 2014 Major League Baseball All-Star Game. At the All-Star game at Target Field, when Gordon was in the on-deck circle, Derek Jeter told Fox TV commentators how amazing it was to see Dee there, also playing as an All-Star, having first met him at age 15 when his father Tom was then pitching for the Yankees. Gordon had entered the game as a pinch-runner in the fourth inning, and scored the game-tying run. Overall, he went 0–1, but made a strong fielding play at second base, sliding to his right to grab a ground ball to end the sixth inning.
Gordon finished the 2014 season with 64 stolen bases, the most in Major League Baseball. It was the first time a Dodgers player had led the Major League in stolen bases since Davey Lopes stole 77 bases in 1975. He hit .289 in over 600 at-bats and also led the league with 12 triples. He was selected as a Sporting News National League all-star.
On December 10, 2014, Gordon was traded to the Miami Marlins, along with Dan Haren and Miguel Rojas, in exchange for Andrew Heaney, Chris Hatcher, Austin Barnes, and Enrique Hernández. Gordon recorded his 50th hit of the season in the Marlins' 28th game on May 7, 2015, tying Rogers Hornsby's 1924 Major League record for fewest team games required to reach 50 hits. After 28 games, Gordon led the major leagues with a .437 batting average. On May 22, Gordon stole four bases in a game against the Baltimore Orioles. In a June 30 home game against the San Francisco Giants, Gordon hit his first inside-the-park home run. The home run against pitcher Ryan Vogelsong scored three runs. It was also the first inside-the-park homer at Marlins Park. Gordon batted .333 for the season, winning the National League batting title and leading the majors in infield hits (36) and bunt hits (16), and winning his first Rawlings Gold Glove Award.
On January 18, 2016, Gordon signed a five-year contract extension with the Marlins worth $50 million. On April 29, Major League Baseball suspended Gordon for 80 games due to performance-enhancing drugs use. He tested positive for exogenous testosterone and clostebol. On September 26, the day after teammate José Fernández died in a boating accident, Gordon led off the game versus the Mets. A left handed hitter, he took the first pitch of his at bat as a right-handed batter, imitating Fernández's batting stance, with Fernández's batting helmet in honor of his late friend. Gordon then switched to bat left handed as he does naturally and hit his first home run of the year. He rounded the bases fighting off tears and hugged teammates upon his arrival back to the dugout. He said after the game that he had never hit a ball that far even in batting practice, adding, "If y'all don't believe in God, y'all might as well start. For that to happen today, we had some help." Gordon's tribute home run to Fernández has been described as a "transcendent MLB moment."
On December 7, 2017, the Marlins traded Gordon and international slot money to the Seattle Mariners for Nick Neidert, Christopher Torres, and Robert Dugger. It was also reported that Gordon would be an outfielder for the Mariners. Gordon played outfield for the Mariners until Robinson Canó was suspended for 80 games, at which point Gordon returned to second base.
In September 2018, a day after Gordon nonchalantly dropped a fly ball in the outfield, he was criticized by and fought teammate Jean Segura in the team's locker room after asking media to leave the room. For the 2018 season Gordon batted .268/.288/.349 with four home runs in 556 at bats. Center fielders set up on average only 302 feet from home plate when he came to bat and left fielders 267 feet from home plate, closer than for any other major league hitter. While he stole 30 bases (fifth in the league), he led the American League with 12 times caught stealing. On defense his 10 errors at second base were third among all AL second basemen, and his .963 fielding percentage in center field was the lowest among all major league center fielders with at least 400 innings played. Gordon walked in 1.5% of his at bats, the lowest percentage in the major leagues, and had the lowest walks-per-strikeout ratio in the majors (0.11).
In 2019, Gordon batted .275/.304/.359 and stole 22 bases in 117 games.
Gordon is involved with many charities, such as Above .500 Inc. where he hosted Meet & Greets and participated in multiple charity games. In addition, Gordon created "Flash of Hope", a charity to help children whose parent died as a result of domestic abuse. Working with the Florida District Attorney's office, he invites one child a month to join him in the clubhouse and during batting practice.
In 2017, Gordon was the Marlins nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award after his work with Athletes Brand and Food for the Hungry in their efforts to end poverty in the Dominican Republic.
In 2020, he announced that he will change his last name from Gordon to Strange-Gordon to honor his late mother, DeVona Denise Strange. His mother was shot and killed when he was just seven years old.
- List of Major League Baseball batting champions
- List of Major League Baseball annual stolen base leaders
- List of Silver Slugger Award winners at second base
- List of Gold Glove Award winners at second base
- List of second-generation Major League Baseball players
- List of Major League Baseball players suspended for performance-enhancing drugs
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