Philadelphia Phillies: Didi Gregorius unable to shake the rust

Gregorius on photo day in Phillies red pinstripes. Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images.
Gregorius on photo day in Phillies red pinstripes. Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images. /

Spring training games only matter for getting loose and getting the groove back. Philadelphia Phillies shortstop Didi Gregorius may have accomplished one, but not the most important one.

Didi Gregorius and his spring of 2020 is beginning to look a lot like Chris Davis and his start of the 2019 regular season. Gregorius is hitless in his first 19 spring at-bats and is making the Philadelphia Phillies wonder if their $14M gamble is going to pay off this year.

This is spring training and one needs not worry about batting averages, home runs, and runs batted in. Or in Gregorius’ case, lack thereof.

More from Call to the Pen

However, he is still just seventeen months removed from the Tommy John surgery which limited his 2019 season. Gregorius says he can attain his pre-surgery numbers, are the Phillies supposed to believe him.

Gregorius did recover to play 82 games for the New York Yankees but his numbers did not fully come back. His batting average and OPS were at their lowest points since leaving Arizona for the Yankees. This didn’t stop the Phillies from signing him to a one year deal and handing him the starting shortstop job.

While the sample size is a small one, with Gregorius playing in only eight games and having just over twenty plate appearances, the spring season is quickly going by the wayside. Saturday’s game marked the half-way point in the schedule.

A round of roster cuts takes place before Sunday’s game, so essentially Gregorius will get more playing time and more at-bats to round into form.

A year removed from bringing in Bryce Harper and J.T. Realmuto, the Phillies pushed even more chips into the pot with the Zack Wheeler signing this offseason. Didi Gregorius has one year to accomplish two things.

More. Phillies: possible match for Ervin Santana. light

He has to help the Phillies make the playoffs for the first time since 2011 and he has to put up worthy statistics to garner his next contract. His early play this spring aren’t lending much hope to either.