As you all may know, the contract of Didi Gregorius with the Yankees will expire after the 2019 season. The question remains if he will return or more important, if the Yankees will make him a acceptable offer.
No doubt the Yankees will make a qualifying offer, that will pay Gregorius around $18,000,000 for the 2020 season. One may even have good hopes the Yankees will make him a good contract offer since they tendered him a contract worth $11.75 MM knowing he would be on the IL for a substantial part of the year, meaning they Yankees have good faith in him.
But personally, I don’t have a good feeling about Didi returning to the Yankees. Since his return from the IL, his numbers are not as good as they used to be. So far he is hitting a meager .240 with sixteen home runs.
The player, the Yankees are platooning him with once in a while, Gleyber Torres, is hitting .279 with thirty-eight home runs. Add the young age (twenty-three) and this makes Torres a good option to fill the vacant spot if the Yankees do not offer Gregorius a new contract.
On the defensive side, Didi is considerably better than Torres. Torres has a lifetime fielding percentage of .954 at shortstop, while Gregorius has a lifetime fielding percentage of .978. But since the focus always seems to be on hitting, Didi’s chances may not be that great.
Of course it also depends on what Gregorius will ask. If he is asking for the jackpot, the Yankees may pass on him. But knowing Didi as a modest and humble player, don’t be surprised he will be satisfied with less.
I am pretty sure Gregorius will find a club for the 2020 season. Much will also depend on if Elvis Andrus will opt out of his contract with the Texas Rangers. If Gregorius will perform well in the playoffs, this may improve his position during the contract negotiations.
Since I am a big fan of him, he is my favorite Yankee by far, I can only hope the Yankees will look past his current batting average and sign him for to a long term contract.