Didi Gregorius proves he still has the goods with outstanding double play [Video]
Didi Gregorius makes astounding ‘play of the year’ for Phillies
After arguably the worst season of his career in 2021, Didi Gregorius has to prove himself all over again.
And the shortstop did just that on Thursday afternoon when the Philadelphia Phillies faced off against his former team, the New York Yankees. In the top of the third inning, Gregorius made a stunning double play that’s already being called the play of the year.
Don’t let the fact that it happened in a spring training game take away from the fact that this is already one of the best defensive plays we’ll see this year. The broadcast called it “highlight reel-worthy.”
It has to feel great for Gregorius, who struggled offensively and defensively last year. He only played 103 games and hit .209/.270/.370 with a .639 OPS in them. In 101 games at short, he made a career-high 18 errors and had a .953 fielding percentage. He turned 49 double plays, only one more than he turned in 80 games at short for the Yankees in 2019.
When the season ended, president of baseball operations, Dave Dombrowski, addressed the media and stated that Gregorius had to be better, and was not guaranteed the starting shortstop role in 2022. Dombrowski also informed the public that he challenged top infield prospect, Bryson Stott, also a shortstop, to come to spring training with the goal of earning a big-league roster spot.
Stott and Gregorius have gone toe-to-toe this spring. They’re hitting well and defending well, which is both a blessing and a curse for the Phillies, who find their infield cup runneth over. It’s a pleasant change from last year’s defensive struggles, but with Opening Day a week away, it makes for some tough decisions in the near future.