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Pays to be an All-Star

Sun., July 14, 2013, midnight

Kansas City’s Alex Gordon didn’t realize the worth of an All-Star appearance.

Yes, there’s the prestige.

But in his case, there’s a huge financial award tucked away in his contract.

By making the American League team for Tuesday night’s game at Citi Field, the Royals outfielder received automatic $500,000 raises in each of the next two seasons and will earn $10.75 million in 2014 and $13.25 million in 2015, according to contract terms obtained by The Associated Press.

“I kind of knew something was in there, but not how much it was or what it involved,” Gordon said. “It didn’t cross my mind right away, though. My agent told me the other day what was going on.”

The price of Gordon’s 2016 player option also increased by $500,000 to $13.25 million. Gordon is eligible for additional raises based on whether he finishes among the top 15 in A.L. MVP voting or wins a Gold Glove or Silver Slugger award.

Baltimore shortstop J.J. Hardy also had an All-Star escalator provision, and his 2014 salary will increase by $500,000 to $7.5 million.

“It was kind of like a last-minute, toward-the-end-of-the- contract deal,” Hardy said. “It’s definitely not a bad bonus, but by no means is that the only reason I’m excited about going. It’s an honor for fans to vote me in. It’s special.”

Gordon and Hardy were among 46 players who are receiving bonuses for making an All-Star team, earning $50,000 each.

Clearing the bases

San Francisco Giants right-hander Paul Davis and New York Mets right-hander Estarlin Morel were suspended under baseball’s minor league drug program. … The low-budget Astros made an investment in their future, signing second baseman Jose Altuve to a four-year contract through 2017. … Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Jeff Locke will sit out next week’s All-Star game because of stiffness in his lower back. … The Chicago Cubs claimed outfielder Cole Gillespie off waivers from the Giants. … The Braves, scrambling after injuries to three starting outfielders, recalled outfielder Jose Constanza from Triple-A Gwinnett. … The Chicago White Sox called up left-hander Donnie Veal from Triple-A Charlotte. … Brett Lawrie was activated from the disabled list by the Toronto Blue Jays after missing almost two months with a left ankle sprain. Munenori Kawasaki was optioned to Triple-A Buffalo.

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