Landing Spots for an Arizona Diamondbacks’ Shortstop
By Thomas Lynch
Is this the offseason when Didi Gregorius gets traded? Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
The Arizona Diamondbacks have depth at shortstop at the Major League level. Didi Gregorius, Chris Owings and Nick Ahmed are all capable of playing every day for the team. Just because management has recently said that not many changes were likely, that doesn’t mean there won’t be one. For the right price, I am sure one of the three shortstops can be had and hopefully for the D’backs, the return can fill a hole on the roster, preferably a starting pitcher. Here are teams that could use a shortstop and may want to have Tony LaRussa and Dave Stewart on speed dial.
New York Yankees: Where do they go for Derek Jeter‘s replacement? Do they swing a deal or do they sign a free agent such as J.J. Hardy or Hanley Ramirez? The Yankees and D’backs have been trading partners in recent years but that was with Kevin Towers, a former New York assistant GM, in charge of the Snakes. My guess is that the Yanks would want to sign a veteran to fill the enormous shoes of the great Jeter. Plus, they don’t really have the starting pitcher Arizona would be looking for.
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New York Mets: The two spots that need to be filled for the Mets are shortstop and left field. It seems as though they might be easing Wilmer Flores into the shortstop role, playing him there toward the end of the season. Trading for a D’backs shortstop would put a more natural player at the position since Flores has bounced between third and short during the course of his career. New York certainly has the pitching to supply Arizona with either a veteran or a propspect.
Oakland A’s: They went all in to try and win a World Series but came up empty. One of those moves involved trading their top shortstop prospect, Addison Russell, to the Cubs for Jeff Samardzija. Daniel Robertson, ranked #9 in the Oakland organization by Baseball America before the season, just finished 2014 at High Single A Stockton. With a team built to win now and starter Jed Lowrie a free agent, perhaps LaRussa and Stewart can place a call to their former employer.
Baltimore Orioles: Hardy will be a free agent after the Orioles are done in the playoffs. It is not clear whether or not Baltimore will be re-signing him. A team like the Yankees can certainly outbid the O’s. Like the Mets, this team has the arms that can help the D’backs in 2015. Of course, if Hardy re-sings with the Orioles, that’s one less potential trading partner.
Owings just had surgery on his shoulder to repair a posterior labrum, That would probably keep him out of any trade talks. However, he should be 100% for Spring Training so if the D’backs decide to trade Ahmed or Gregorius, Owings can be ready to step in. Then again, the loser of the shortstop battle before this season started was to have been dealt. We’ll see if history repeats itself.