The story behind Dee Gordon’s ‘Bigger Than Baseball’ moment at Mariners spring training

Mar 6, 2019, 7:14 PM | Updated: 8:41 pm
Mariners 2B Dee Gordon shares a moment with fan Ann Rogers. (Curtis Rogers photo)...
Mariners 2B Dee Gordon shares a moment with fan Ann Rogers. (Curtis Rogers photo)
(Curtis Rogers photo)

“Bigger Than Baseball.”

That’s the hashtag the MLB Twitter account used when it retweeted an incredible moment shared between Mariners second baseman Dee Gordon and fan Ann “Annie” Rogers of Kent at spring training Wednesday afternoon, and it couldn’t be more apt.

The original post and picture came from Ann’s brother, 710 ESPN Seattle host Curtis Rogers, and it was swiftly going viral. As of 7 p.m. Wednesday night, the original post was nearing 12,000 likes.

How could it not? Ann, who Curtis said is “definitely the biggest Mariners fan I know,” recognized Gordon as he came off the field following batting practice, and the two “hit it off.” Then all of the sudden Gordon began to gift his gear to Ann.

And not just one piece of gear. Just about all of it.

Curtis jumped on with Danny, Dave and Moore at spring training in Peoria, Ariz., not long after the moment to share how the interaction came to be as well as some backstory.

“My sister is 36 years old, she has Down syndrome, she’s been a Special Olympics athlete for as long as I’ve been alive. She competes in swimming every single year, she’s won a whole bunch of gold medals at the state competition,” he said. “(Gordon) pointed out my sister, she was standing there, she recognized Dee Gordon and they hit it off. And then Dee Gordon all of the sudden starts undoing his batting gloves, hands those over. He undoes his arm sleeve, hands that over, and it’s like, wow, that’s awesome. And then to cap it off he hands the baseball bat over.

“I don’t think any of us expected Dee Gordon to go above and beyond the way he did. We’ve only been down here maybe 24 hours. It made the whole week worth it.”

What really makes the moment particularly special is how big of a fan Ann is.

“She is maybe the biggest sports fan I know, outside of me, and she is definitely the biggest Mariners fan I know,” Curtis said. “There is not a game she will miss, there’s not a player on the roster she doesn’t know, and to see her have a moment like that, it got me choked up. I’m not somebody that chokes up like that; it was so awesome to see.

“I don’t think I’m going to have a bad word to say about Dee Gordon again. I don’t know if I ever could say something bad about that guy (before), but it was just an incredible, incredible moment.”

Danny O’Neil, who along with the rest of the Danny, Dave and Moore show was present for Ann’s moment with Gordon, said that while there was a picture taken, Gordon wasn’t being generous just to get attention. Far from it.

“Dee is someone who does an awful lot of things that he doesn’t either seek or want attention for, and this was not in front of cameras or anything,” O’Neil said. “It was him seeing someone who was interested and reaching out and making a connection with someone. It’s really cool to see.”

By the way, while watching the Mariners’ Cactus League game against the A’s Wednesday night, you better believe Ann was wearing that gear Gordon gave her.

Listen to the full segment from Danny, Dave and Moore here.

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The story behind Dee Gordon’s ‘Bigger Than Baseball’ moment at Mariners spring training