Yankees Add Shortstop Didi Gregorius as Replacement for JeterErik Matuszewski
The New York Yankees acquired Didi Gregorius as a potential successor to Derek Jeter, who was the team’s starting shortstop for most of the past two decades.
Gregorius, 24, comes to New York from the Arizona Diamondbacks as part of a three-team trade that also involved the Detroit Tigers. The Yankees sent pitcher Shane Greene to the Tigers, while the Diamondbacks received pitcher Robbie Ray and infielder Domingo Leyba from Detroit.
Born in the Netherlands and raised primarily in Curacao, Gregorius has appeared in 191 Major League Baseball games over parts of three seasons with the Diamondbacks and Cincinnati Reds, hitting .243 with 13 home runs and 57 runs batted in.
After the 2012 season, which he split mostly between the Double- and Triple-A levels in the minor leagues, Gregorius was named by Baseball America as the best defensive infielder in the Diamondbacks’ system. He also earned that honor with the Reds following the 2011 season.
Gregorius batted .226 for Arizona last season with six home runs and 27 runs batted in while appearing in 80 games. He also had 2 defensive runs saved last season, a statistic used to measure fielders against the average at their position, according to Baseball Reference. Zero is average. Jeter, who retired after the season at age 40, ranked among the worst position players in the majors at minus-12 last season.
A 14-time All-Star, Jeter helped the Yankees win five World Series titles after becoming the team’s starting shortstop in 1996.