Didi Gregorius’ decision last winter to bet on himself with a one-year deal looks to have been a wise one, and he’ll now head back to free agency on the heels of a .284/.339/.488 slash with 10 home runs in a full 60 games with the Phillies. He’s already been linked to the Angels, and Gregorius himself said today in an appearance on WFAN’s Moose & Maggie Show that he’d have interest in returning to the Phillies (audio link).
“If they want me back, sure,” Gregorius said. “…I can’t force or say that I have to do this, or I have to be there. At the end of the day, it’s up to them. I really enjoyed playing with the guys over there. I had a really great time.”
Gregorius’ deal with the Phils reunited him with former Yankees skipper Joe Girardi, whom the shortstop praised multiple times throughout the interview. The 30-year-old Gregorius also had nothing but positive things to say when asked about playing alongside Bryce Harper, calling him “awesome” multiple times while discussing the experience.
While Gregorius’ positive comments on his time with the Phillies and his openness to a return are surely of note, his reply when asked about a return to the Yankees is drawing considerable attention in its own right.
“I don’t think they would want me back in New York to be honest right now,” Gregorius said when asked about whether he could envision a return to the Bronx. Asked why, he expressed confidence that Gleyber Torres would rebound from his 2020 struggles and seize the shortstop job.
“I think Gleyber is the future shortstop,” said Gregorius. “It’s just the one year and to my understanding he was hurt for some of it. Once you get hurt, it’s like a step back on everything. If he gets to next year, he’s fully prepared and ready to go, I think everything should work smoothly and he will be fine.”
It was a rather rough season for 23-year-old Torres in 2020, but he’ll surely be given every opportunity to rebound next year, whether at shortstop or second base. Torres turned in a respectable .243/.356/.368 slash through 160 plate appearances, but that was a far cry from 2019’s brilliant .278/.337/.535 line and 38 homers. More glaring, perhaps, were Torres’ defensive issues (-9 DRS, -5 UZR, -4 OAA).
Despite those defensive struggles, Yankees GM Brian Cashman said last week that Torres “is our shortstop moving forward” (link via Kristie Ackert of the New York Daily News). Cashman expressed confidence that Torres could improve his glovework but stopped short of declaring that he’d be the shortstop in 2021, instead stating that the organization will “continue to evaluate” its options.
Many Yankees fans have clamored for a reunion with Gregorius, who exceeded expectations in the Bronx as the successor to Derek Jeter at shortstop. However, Gregorius implied that he saw the writing on the wall toward the end of his time in New York and did not speak optimistically about a return tour in the near future.
Of course, Gregorius’ strong season makes him a potential qualifying offer candidate. That could impact his market and would leave him with the choice of returning to join Girardi, Harper and others on a one-year deal worth $18.9MM or hitting the market in search of a multi-year pact. Generally, when a player bets on himself with a one-year pact and delivers high-quality results, it’s expected that he’ll look to cash in on a longer-term deal the following winter. This offseason is anything but typical, though, and the league-wide revenue losses raise the question of whether the Phillies would risk making the offer and whether Gregorius would consider accepting.
Yes make the QO and offer 2/35 with a third yr option. AAV lower but guaranteed more …
I said exactly the same a few weeks ago…. 2/$35 with option…….Martin or Stott should be ready by then………Phils cannot afford to lose Didi’s bat with JT seeking riches elsewhere. Didi was the most consistent hitter on the team and was solid at SS……..he’s worth the cash……
I wouldn’t be shocked to see him go back to the Yanks on the condition that they miss on resigning LeMahieu
I hope they are thinking that way.
The Yankees will sign DJ LeMahieu. Count on it. You don’t let the only player on your team who could break into the starting lineup of the 1998 Yankees walk away for more money. The will end up around 5 years and 100M.
I was thinking about the same. And you are correct. Letting him go would be a horrible mistake.
Goes to show how much you know about the 98 Yankees. Chad Curtis was a starting OF for that team
And Darryl Strawberry was the DH
Urshela would be 3B and agree DJ is better than that steroid using DJ from 98 steroid Yanks
If you mean Derek Jeter, you’re talking about a player whom no one has ever credibly accused of juicing. If you have evidence to support that accusation, post it here. If you have no such evidence, you should be ashamed of slandering someone without evidence.
I can’t think of a single thing tying Jeter to roids other than the era he played in. He hit more like a classic shortstop. His game wasn’t centered around power and his body type seemed to be that of a typical shortstop. To just assume that he was a user could be doing him the greatest injustice. What if he was clean and managed to put together a hall of fame career against a good number of pitchers that were juiced up. To just write off a whole generation of players based solely on speculation would be the worst way to go about it
If Mr. Cohen wants to make a statement over in Flushing by signing LeMahieu, do you think Hal is so motivated to keep that from happening that he’d get into a bidding war with the Mets? After hearing Hal talk about the financial losses this year, I have doubts.
He loved the Phillies clubhouse and they loved him. I think Phillies will keep him around, especially after they lose Realmuto.
Hard to believe they gave up sixto for 2 years of realmuto
Hard to believe it when that’s not what happened.
No, they gave up Sixto AND Alfaro for two years of Realmuto, Alfaro isn’t great, but he would have been decent in tandem with Knapp had the Phillies not made the trade. Don’t forget the Phillies were “going for it” but wound up missing the playoffs in both years with Realmuto. Fans blamed Kapler the first year but the results were the same with “genius” Girardi, highlighted by a late-season collapse. It wasn’t the manager. It was a roster that wasn’t good enough to win. Klentak is gone because of it. And yes, the Realmuto trade will go down as a big fail.
Ouch. Cey Hey, that was just harsh. But you are right.
The Phillies have a home grown talent problem and that won’t be fixed this year. This biggest WAR producers this season just like last season. Look at the Phillies top 10 WAR producers.
Z. Wheeler 2.9
*A. Nola 2.2
B. Harper 1.7
*Z. Efflin 1.6
JT. Realmuto 1.2
J. Segura 1.2
D. Gregorius 0.9
J. Arrieta 0.8
*A. Bohm 0.7
*R. Hoskins 0.7
*A. Knapp 0.7
The asterisks are the home grown players. Now look at the Braves.
*F. Freeman 2.9
*M. Fried 2.9
*D. Swanson 2.6
*R. Acuna 2.1
*I. Anderson 1.3
*AJ. Minter 1.2
Chris Martin 1.2
S. Green 1.0
M. Melancon 1.0
T. dAnaud 0.6
This isn’t intended to be a Braves are better than the Phillies post. I just know the Braves system better than the rest. I would assume I could use the Dodgers, Devil Rays or White Sox the same way. Phillies young talent just isn’t producing enough.
Jesus, I just looked at the Rangers WAR leaders this season… and it was bad. I know we were the 2nd worst team in the game, but this is terrible.
Jonathan Hernandez 0.6
Joely Rodriguez 0.4
Huff (played in only 10 games btw) 0.4
Kyle Cody (really good in limited time) 0.4
Rafael Montero, Kolby Allard, and Kyle Gibson all came in with 0.3
After that there were a few with 0.1. I hope this team gets better. Lastly, 6 out of the 10 were from outside of the organization. Montero, Allard, Gibson, Minor, Lynn, and Rodriguez. That’s laughably bad.
Totally, Myth. And it’s essentially always been tgat way with the Phillies.
They haven’t been the Devil Rays in 13 years.
Eflin is not home grown. He was first drafted by San Diego and went to the Dodgers and came via the Jimmy Rollins trade.
Yes, I know. Just as Swanson wasn’t first drafted by the Braves. For the purposes of financial obligations I included them. Besides that, just how much time a player has to spend in any particular farm system to be “home grown” by that team is not well defined. So if a player spends 2 years with the Twins farm but was drafted by the Marlins but only spent 1 year there, who do we say “grew” him? In this since it’s just silly to debate the subject.
Correct, because “Devil” is a racial slur
Swanson isn’t homegrown. Braves acquired him and Touki Toussaint from the D-Backs in the Shelby Miller trade. Even if Touki never throws another pitch for Atlanta, that trade will go down as one of the best Braves’ trades ever.
The NL team that has a stranglehold on homegrown hitters and pitchers is the Cardinals.
The Cardinals have been slipping up in trading the good ones and keeping the bad ones as of late
I’m a Phillies fan but am the first to admit the Braves evaluate and develop better. Having said that, the Phillies passed on both Walker Buehler and Ian Anderson in their respective drafts. The Phillies have succeeded in both looking bad and making other teams look good.
@Lou. I already explained why I included players not drafted by these teams.
Makes Sense to me… They could use a little left-handed pop and a good defensive shortstop… The whole team is too right handed
This is un-related, but today Hulu dropped all fox regional channels, and I just have to rant. We quit Directv after years of outrageous bills to them because they were just getting terrible in their billing. We picked up Hulu live this year because not only was it cheaper, but it also had FSSW (the Ranger’s network). Now that they’ve dropped it today, there is very few options left to watch the games because all the networks are dropping their fox regional contracts. I could use MLB tv with a VPN (no), I could switch back to Directv… At&t (dear god no), and I think that’s it. We tried Sling though literally a week after having it, they dropped FSSW (last year). I’m pretty pissed off, but at least it’s the off-season, so I don’t have to miss it. I haven’t done this in a while, but I could always listen to it on the radio. The announcers are great over there.
Fox Regional Sports Networks were sold to Sinclair. Its possible they will make a deal with the new ownership. I would hold on until everything shakes out before doing anything drastic.
Yeah, luckily there is plenty of time to work out TV deals over the off-season.
Chief Two Hands
There are options if you know where to look on the internet. I cancelled cable a few months ago, and just watch sports online for free. Just have to be a little savvy with the internet, but it doesn’t take much. As a Dodgers fan who has moved around a bit, I have had to do that for a while, anyway. Even while being back in SoCal I had to because I had Directv and didn’t want to pay Time Warner.
Yeah, I’m younger than a lot of the people here, I use the internet a lot… and what you just described what pirating lol. You sound like the “If you want to have a good time, call” numbers in a public bathroom stall.
Chief Two Hands
“When was the last time you saw a real pirate? Never, because they are all dead from scurvy and cannonballs, and cannonballs filled with scurvy.” Heh I love that commercial.
I know you can do that, but I’d still like to watch it on a true provider. With my luck I’d “watch it for free online” and the government would use me as the example of “Piracy is a federal crime” lol. Not really wanting to do that. I know people do it all the time, but I’m a skeptic.
Chief Two Hands
They wouldn’t target you, just the site. But to each his or her own.
True. Heck a local sports radio host in Austin went on and said that he pirates some of the games he watches lol. He said the site and everything, and he’s still at the station. I’d want to look into everything first, but if it came to that, I might.
I love National Talk Like a Pirates Fan Day.
“Argh. Argh. We stink. I wish that cheapskate Nutting would sell the team.”
False, Steve the Pirate in Dodgeball.
Cey Hey.. As an ECU Pirates fan I love the talk like a pirate day and feel your pain about sucking.
I’m an east-coast Dodger fan who does the same thing. We stopped watching TV in 2007 and I am down to just baseball for sports. MLB.TV fills my needs perfectly. Post-season? I find a way to watch games. Oddly, the only regular-season game I’ve missed recently was during a week-long Dodger Stadium excursion in 2018. We didn’t attend the game one day and couldn’t find a place to watch it on TV. It made me happy I lived in Pennsylvania.
Look up “MLBstreams” and save yourself a lot of trouble
That’s just perfect, A guy with the username CrookedAsstros telling me where to find pirated stuff. I love it.
AGREED. I was wprking hard to pay $60/Month for Hulu Live. It’s the only way I can get YES and all other Fox Sports channels to watch the yankees. I stopped being able to afford it about 40 games into the season. Now I’m lucky of the game comes in on my battery radio.
Some of my fondest memories as a kid were me and my younger brother sitting on our front porch listening to Phillies game on a transistor radio. Try it, it’s fun. And BTW, I haven’t been a kid since 1958!
If I were Didi and was offered the QO I think I might take it. My guess is he won’t be offered that much $ on an AAV basis for a longer term contract — and seeing as he was confident betting on himself this past off-season, why not do it one more time, cash in on the $18.9M and then go into next off-season without the hindrance of a QO. He’s ‘young-enough’ (30/31) that he could still get a multi-year deal next off-season – and if he puts up numbers like he did this year over the course of a full season I think he’d have plenty of lucrative offers next year when the market is maybe a little bit closer to back to normal (following the current revenue losses from COVID). I think if he’s looking to sign long-term now he’s probably looking at a 4/5 year deal worth $60-$75M. But if he takes the QO, makes $18.9M this year, hits like he did this season in 60 games over a full 162 he could then position himself for a similar 4/$65M+ next off-season without having to worry about teams not being willing to part with a draft pick to sign him. Having said all that… if I’m the Phillies I might not want to take the risk of him accepting the QO so it’s possible they may not even offer it. If so… he could have a broader market this off-season and wind up with a bigger contract, say 5/$80-$90M? I’m not a huge Didi fan – I think his OBP limits his overall value. But given the lack of alternatives available at SS I could definitely see a team in need offering close to 5/$90M if no draft-pick compensation is attached and a bidding war ensues.
He should take the QO if/when he gets it, another year in the Phillies line-up will be great for him and he will make nearly $20 million for it. Plus, he is still relatively young enough where he can still cash in next winter while hoping the market rebounds and COVID goes away.
Didi back to Yankees would be great but it’s doubtful that happens. DJL is probably priority number one. If they get both players Voit has to go and I wouldn’t like it but changes need to be made. They can’t keep the same team over and over again. Gardner should go too. Tauchman is a cheaper alternative if they want to save some money.
Frazier will be the leftfielder next year!
I don’t know…. Do you really want to go into the same free agent class as Lindor, Baez, Correa, Story and Seager??
Maybe. Some team might look at him as a better option than shelling out megabucks for one of those five. It’s not bad thinking if you already have a good team, need a shortstop, and want to spend the leftover money to fill other needs. Either way, Didi’s not going to break the bank.
I’m not sure I’d bet on that marketing philosophy…
I don’t think you want to be the sixth most attracted option on the table… Doesn’t give you a whole lot of options as to where you will end up playing.
I mean don’t get me wrong, I would love to have Didi at a discount but no team is going to get into a bidding war and drive his price up…
drasco, I get what you’re saying and don’t disagree. But this year’s SS market might be depressed due to Corona economics. Granted, the expanded playoffs might make some teams more aggressive since a good SS will increase their chances of playing in October.
It will be interesting to see how this winter’s FA market shakes out. We’re a long way from knowing how many games will be played in 2021 and if/when there will be fans in the stands. It’s possible there will be no or limited fans early with a more normal setting planned for later in the season. If that’s the case, teams might be willing to shell out for players with the idea that a playoff berth will replenish their coffers. Even without COVID, expanded playoffs will likely change how rosters are built in the off-season.
You’re not wrong. I do not envy Didi for being in this position that is for sure. On one hand, you are probably going hung with a Qualifying Offer (unless the Phillies intend on going guns blazing on Realmuto and they don’t want that 19 million committed) on the other hand you have five excellent short stop hitting free agency at the same time.
There is a little piece of mind knowing the Angels have some interest but who knows what they are thinking in terms of years and dollar amounts… They have a ton of money tied up in Trout and Rendon not to mention Upton’s contract.
Does anyone ever know what the Angels are thinking? Seems like the big boss makes all the calls, and he’s pretty bad at that.
Keep in mind that the market price is determined by the intersection of supply and demand. You just described the supply. But implicitly, those five available quality shortstops come from five teams that are suddenly missing a quality shortstop, So at least some of those teams are going to be looking for a decent replacement SS at a reasonable price.
Gasu… That is a true statement but only a handful of teams will be able to shell out big contracts. So where you are right about supply and demand, you also have to take into consideration purchasing power.
It’s going to be interesting to see how teams approach free agency in the next two years in that regard. I think “super stars” will be fine but the solid guys like Didi will see their dollar value decrease.
Ducky Buckin Fent
I think he needs to land a multi-year deal this winter. ’21 off-season will be a lollapalooza of free agent shortstops.
Didi is so awesome, man.
Love how he defended Gleyber. He definitely seems like a decent backup plan to DJL.
The more I think about it, the less I can picture the Yankees re-signing LeMahieu.
DJ is a perfect fit for NY, he is a high contact, high batting average guy. The Rockies raved about his leadership also. I was so pi$$ed off the Cubs didn’t bring him home two years ago because he was literally what the team was lacking and continues to lack.
Of course, with that said, I think LeMahieu is a 15 million dollar player. I think his stats and rep gets a big shoot in the arm playing in New York but he isn’t a guy you invest franchise altering money around.
I don’t know how you rate Fangraphs’ valuations based on WAR, but they put LeMahieu’s dollar value at $42.8M in 2019.
Ducky Buckin Fent
He really is a great fit with the Yanks.
In addition to his hitting, he fields well & doesn’t do stupid stuff on the bases. Things the Yankees have struggled with recently.
All that being acknowledged, I think the Yankees rumbling about getting under the CBT is for real. It’s a tough time to tighten up the belt seeing the numerous holes in the entire pitching staff.
Good chance the middle infielder the Yanks sign is *not* Didi *or* DJ but someone like LaStella who will cost significantly less.
Multi-position guys like LaStella and Kiké Hernandez are invaluable in this era where teams carry so many pitchers. They provide depth that makes it easier to deal with injuries that are certain to occur. Perhaps you’ve heard that the Yankees have had problems in this area 🙂
I hate the idea of the Dodgers losing Kiké, but he can help a number of teams and can be replaced internally.
I don’t know what kind of fit LaStella would be in New York but offensively he and DJ are very similar. New York will would take a little bit of a step back on offense because Tommy isn’t quite as polished. He isn’t quite as good of a runner and isn’t in the same league defensively but he isn’t going to cost more than 10 million per season where DJ is probably going to be 25 million at least.
If I was NY I would set my price around 17.5 million AAV for three years and not come off it or let him chase the big money and sign elsewhere because not only can I get Tommy LaStella for significantly cheaper, I can let Gardner walk and sign Michael Brantley for around 16 million and not miss much as far as skill set and leadership go.
Brantley is a total pro who consistently gives quality at-bats. That has “Yankees” written all over it., Brantley and Kiké for somewhere around a combined $25 million would be decent value. Kiké doesn’t have a robust bat, but hits some homers, has the major-market experience, and excels anywhere you put him on defense. He has had some big post-season moments including a 3-HR game in the ’17 World Series. And his occasional offensive swoons never affect his defense
If the NL keeps the DH for 2021 Brantley is the guy I want in Chicago!
If I was Houston however and early talks with Springer are going nowhere, I would hang a QO over Brantley and hope he accepts.
I don’t think for a second Brantley and Hernandez would cost 25 million combines, probably closer to 20.
drasco, the $20 million is probably more accurate. For a team that already has its nucleus in place, it would be money well spent.
Ducky Buckin Fent
They are & not only have I heard about the Yanks “problems in this area” but I’ve gotten to watch it play out.
I’m not all that familiar with Hernandez (NL, West Coast, etc) but I do think LaStella’s the type of hitter the Yanks are enamored with. I’m not overly concerned about the whole “lineup balance” thing (good hitters are good hitters – uh?) but he *is* a LH bat.
If it’s a choice between DJ or LaStella & a reliever (or two? – looking more forward to this year’s top 50 list than usual) I’d probably opt for the latter.
Ducky Buckin Fent
Don’t see Brantley as a fit.
The biggest difficulty in replacing GGBG is whomever it is also needs to be capable of playing center.
I like Brantley. But I don’t think he’s that guy.
The only free agent that checks that box is Joc Pederson. And, from what I understand his days in CF may be ovah*. After that it’s guys like Bradley and Pillar. Which means run it back with Gardy.
*You’re a Dodgers fan, right? Can Pederson still handle CF?
Yes, a reasonable and realistic response by Didi. LeMahieu is a tough one. He will probably get significant offers from teams that are willing to reward him for the great years he had elsewhere. Always a free-agent dilemma. If the Yankees pass on him it won’t necessarily be a bad move. Remember the Braves fans who moaned when they didn’t bring back Donaldson? It turned out to be the correct decision as Donaldson got hurt and AA signed Ozuna for a year to take his spot in the lineup.
Re Didi and a possible return to the Bronx: If Gleyber rebounds as he should, Didi wouldn’t have to hit like DJ. He just has to be the same steady player he’s always been.
LeMahieu has led the Yankees in fWAR by a substantial margin two years in a row. Donaldson didn’t lead the Braves in fWAR; Acuna did, and they still have him. Losing DJ would be different from losing Donaldson. The Yankees don’t have another player with LeMahieu’s skills, and they’re skills they sorely need.
My Donaldson example refers to difficult decisions regarding free-agent spending. Atlanta obviously played it correctly. Had they not lost their best pitcher for essentially the entire season, who knows what might have happened. Their time is really close and the window is wide. Close to the Dodgers and better than everyone else in either league.
I would pass on overpaying for LeMahieu, though someone will. Dishing out a multi-year contract to a guy who will be 33 in July is risky (see Donaldson, Josh). Some have suggested the Dodgers but I don’t think so. Mets as a 3B? Cardinals or Angels as a 2B? Maybe. Personally, I would hate to see my team overpay for a guy who is about to leave his prime. Given their luxury situation, how high would the Yankees even go?
Justin Turner will be 36 in a month. How’s he doing?
The main reasons I can see the Yankees possibly letting DJ walk are Hal’s recent comments lamenting the financial losses from this season, and the possible determination of the new Mets owner, Mr. Cohen, to fire a shot across the Yankees’ bow and make a splash on the back pages by outbidding the Yankees..
As I said I love LaMahieu but he is tailor made for the Yankees and the AL East. His power plays in New York and their ball park, which is evident by his 19/7 home run ratio in 2019 and 8/2 ratio in 2020.
He is a line drive, gap to gap hitter and it just so happens balls those types of hit fly out the park in New York.
So, since I’m a Cubs fan i’ll say if the Cubs sign him, you cannot expect a 30 home runs, 100 RBI’s and a .900 OPS, you’ll get around .300 batting average, 15-20 home runs, .800 OPS. Which is a solid player and exactly what the Cubs need but he is going to get in the 25-30 million AAV range and probably one extra year when you can get very similar production from Tommy LaStella for less than half.
DJ is as solid as they come, leadership, hit tool and defense but like I said, he is a 15-20 million player to the majority of the league. It just so happens he is in a perfect place for him.
Completely agree. Lotta people forget DJL was A career 96 OPS+ hitter just 2 years ago
He isn’t going to be the same hitter he was in NYY everywhere, imo. I can easily see him being a drain on a mid market payroll in a couple years
The qualifying offer makes sense for both Didi and the Phillies in this environment. Didi gets paid a nice one year salary and bets on himself again. The Phillies inch one year closer to Stott and can reinvest the Didi money elsewhere in 2022 when he is ready. It just makes too much sense for both sides unless Didi gets a ridiculous contract offer elsewhere.
Been a Phillies fan since the early ’50s. I wouldn’t be so quick to anoint our starting SS in 2022. No guarantee he isn’t the second coming of Kingery or Moniak.
DJ is the silent leader of the Yankee team, they will make every effort to resign him. 4/80.
I wanted to pass along a “thank you” to everyone on this thread for the very civil and informative discussions!!!
Trade Torres and Sanchez for Lindor with 4 yr extension. Sign DJ and A Romine
Cleveland will not take Sanchez in any trade. Cleveland values defense and catcher and Sanchez is the exact opposite of that.
Sign Realmuto, Dee Dee and Bauer. Trade Sanchez and Otto to Mil for Hader
Sanchez has little trade value. Ottavino has even less trade value with his contract. Ottavino and Sanchez will not get the Yankees Hader.
I’m doubtful that Milwaukee would trade Hader, who’s projected to earn less than $7M in 2021 through arbitration, for two players who stank on ice this year and who’ll cost around $15M next year, especially when Sanchez’s decline is more than a one-year occurrence.
Personally, I think Gary can rebound away from New York; but any team trading for him is taking a gamble. Cashman might be disposed to overvalue Sanchez, but he might have trouble finding another GM who does.
Would love to see Didi back in Philly. He was by far our most consistent hitter this year. Maybe next year, if he’s here and COVID-19 is old news, Philly fans will actually get a chance to see what he looks like. Didi wore a black mask everywhere: Field, at bat and in the dugout. He could have walked down Chestnut St. sans mask and 80% wouldn’t have recognized him.