Justin Upton of the Tigers sent a deep drive that looked like a sure double into the left-center-field gap leading off the fourth inning in the Royals' 4-0 victory Thursday. But Gordon, running in a full sprint, chased it down, reached to full extension and snared the ball as he belly-planted on the warning track.
Royals players on the field and in the dugout raised their hats in salute. And most of the crowd delivered a standing ovation.
"It's always nice that the fans appreciate how much pride we take in our defense," Gordon said.
According to Statcast™, Gordon reached a max speed of 18.6 mph while covering a distance of 122.6 feet, and he had a route efficiency of 97.5 percent.
Not many at Kauffman Stadium thought Gordon had a shot at catching Upton's ball.
"I thought, 'No way!'" starter Edinson Volquez said. "I looked for [Lorenzo Cain] and he wasn't there. Then I saw Gordo come out of nowhere. Man."
Gordon said he got a decent jump.
"We were playing Upton the opposite way," Gordon said, "so I knew Lo was not going to get there. But I also knew the wind was blowing pretty good and it might hold it up a little longer, and it did. Then I just went after it."
Gordon appeared to land hard on his front side.
"Nah, it was a clean slide," Gordon said. "Typical Gordo -- lay there and make it look worse than it was."
And it wasn't the only big defensive play Gordon made -- he also threw out Jose Iglesias, who was trying to advance from first to third on Ian Kinsler's single, to end the third inning. Gordon threw him out by several feet.