MLB: AZ Diamondbacks Didi Gregorius
Shortstop Didi Gregorius made his Arizona Diamondbacks season debut last Thursday in an inter-league game against the New York Yankees and he homered in his first at-bat and then added a double in five trips to the plate. His home-run actually came on his first pitch in a Diamondbacks uniform; making an immediate impression on his teammates and coaches. Gregorius became the seventh player to homer in his first at-bat with the Diamondbacks joining Alex Cabrera, Bobby Estalella, Jose Cruz Jr., Felipe Lopez, Gerardo Parra and John Hester. However he is the first of the group to do it on the first pitch. A few days after making his smashing debut he had quite an encore. Gregorius hit his second major league home run and singled to start a two-run rally in the ninth inning that led the Diamondbacks over the Rockies 5-4.
Here is some information about Didi Gregorius and what you might expect from him.
Born in the Netherlands and raised in Curacao. He turned 23 on February 18th. He was signed by the Cincinnati Reds as an amateur free agent in 2007. Gregorius made his big league debut last September with the Reds and went 6-for-20 in eight games. Gregorius came to be known for his flashy defensive work during big league camp for the Reds last year. Some of you might remember him from the Arizona Fall League; he played for the Peoria Javelinas in 2012 and hit .284 in 74 plate appearances.
On December 11, 2012 the Diamondbacks pulled off a nine-player trade with the Indians and Reds that netted them Gregorius, along with left-handed reliever Tony Sipp and first baseman/outfielder Lars Anderson.
Gregorius was off to a quick start for the Diamondbacks Triple-A Reno Aces. He was 12-for-31 with two home-runs before being called up.
Gregorius should see much of his playing time at shortstop for the Diamondbacks while second baseman Aaron Hill remains out for 4 to 6 weeks with a broken left hand. Following two consecutive starts he was rested, while Cliff Pennington moved over to shortstop and Josh Wilson stepped in at second. He was back in the lineup last Sunday against the Rockies. The team will ease Gregorius back into action until his elbow is completely healthy. Gregorius felt discomfort in the elbow while working out two months ago in preparation for the World Baseball Classic. An examination found a slight strain of the ulnar collateral ligament and he sat out most of spring training.
The Diamondbacks return home on Thursday, April 25th to face the Rockies and it is Jackie Robinson Day, $0.42 from every ticket sold will benefit the Jackie Robinson Foundation and Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Phoenix. Come out and support a great Foundation see the flashy Didi Gregorius in action.
I hope to see you at the ballpark.