Didi Gregorius appears to be a popular guy. Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
There is one name that will be on the minds of several general managers when talking trade with the Arizona Diamondbacks. That would be shortstop Didi Gregorius, thanks in no small part to the abundance of talent the D’backs possess at the position. In case you don’t believe me, check out this tweet from Jon Heyman at CBS Sports:
Why trade him? As stated earlier, the Snakes are deep at shortstop with Gregorius, Chris Owings and Nick Ahmed. In the head-to-head battle to determine who would start in 2013, Owings defeated Gregorius with the latter being sent to Triple A Reno. A shoulder injury to Owings allowed Gregorius to be recalled and play fairly well. However, he did nothing to dispel the notion that he is much more glove than bat with a .226 batting average and a .290 on-base percentage. However, the popularity of Gregroius shows that management across the entire league is placing a premium on great defense at shortstop.
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Teams in need: While a team like the Oakland A’s could use help at the position, the two franchises driving this conversation are located in New York. Both the Yankees and the Mets have the pieces the D’backs need to fill holes in the organization. Despite already sending Peter O’Brien to Arizona as part of the Martin Prado deal and trading Francisco Cervelli, the Yanks still have catching prospects to spare. There is Gary Sanchez, known more for his bat and J.R. Murphy who is a better all-around receiver. Both men have seen spare time in the Majors.
As for the Mets, they are the ones with pitching to spare. While super prospect Noah Syndergaard would be regarded as too steep a price for New York, there are other arms available in Rafael Montero and Steven Matz. Montero had eight starts for the Mets in 2014 while Matz has shot through the Minor League system and is on track to start 2015 in Triple A. The Mets are also being linked to Starlin Castro of the Cubs so the D’backs have some competition if they intend to deal a shortstop to Queens.
What will ultimately happen: I am not 100% convinced that it will be Gregorius switching addresses. Despite losing the battle in Spring Training last year, it was a different regime that made the decision. Perhaps new manager Chip Hale is more of a defensive guy and Gregorius fan, although Owings isn’t too shabby in the field, either. I think the only thing we know for certain is that someone will be traded. The crowded infield can’t stay together over the entire 2015 season.