La Velle E. Neal III has covered baseball for the Star Tribune since 1998 (the post-Knoblauch era). Born and raised in Chicago, he grew up following the White Sox and hating the Cubs. He attended both the University of Illinois and Illinois-Chicago and began his baseball writing career at the Kansas City Star. He can be heard occasionally on KFAN radio, lending his great baseball mind to Paul Allen and other hosts. Mark Rosen borrows him occasionally for WCCO-TV.

Twins agree to terms with top pick Gordon

Posted by: La Velle E. Neal III Updated: June 9, 2014 - 5:19 PM

The Twins announced this afternoon that they have agreed to terms with first-round draft pick Nick Gordon to a deal for the $3.85 million bonus recommended by the league, according to sources familiar with negotiations.

Major League Baseball's exact assigned value for the No. 5 overall pick is $3.851,000.

Gordon, a shortstop who starred at Olympia High in Orlando, Fla.,will begin his professional career at Elizabethton, Tenn., home of the Twins' rookie team in the Appalachian League. The team's season starts on June 19.

Gordon has a strong arm - he also pitched in high school, hitting 94 mph with his fastball - but his future is as an everyday player. He batted .494 as a high school senior with 10 doubles, two triples, five homers and 13 stolen bases in 99 plate appearances. he batted .505 as a high school junior.

One happy person will be former major leaguer Tom Gordon, Nick's father, who was hoping for a quick negation so his son could get his career started. Tom Gordon had a 21-year major league career as a reliever, and was a three-time All-Star. Nick's older brother, Dee Gordon, is the Dodgers starting second baseman and leads the NL with 36 stolen bases and six triples.

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