Didi Gregorius is staying in Philadelphia after a long wait this offseason.
Gregorius was a real contributor for the Phillies in the COVID-19 shortened 60-game season. After a tough last year with the Yankees, which led to him taking just a one-year prove-it contract, Gregorius showed out in 2020, hitting .284 with 10 home runs and 40 RBIs in 60 games.
Dave Dombrowski has acted quickly as Phillies general manager, proving that the Middleton ownership group can, in fact, have a win-now approach when pushed to do so. Just days after signing JT Realmuto to his long-term contract, Gregorius adds another central piece back to the Phillies infield and lineup. Not to mention, the financial hit is not a concerning one.
Phillies have more to add in free agency if they want to compete
If Dombrowski is truly trying to fix the Phillies issues in one offseason, he’ll start by bringing in another starting pitcher and a reliever. The Phillies bullpen was atrocious last season — we’re talking historic-level bad. The starting rotation could definitely use another mid-tier started behind the likes of Aaron Nola.
Also on the docket for Dombrowski is figuring out management’s direction for Jean Segura. The Dominican infielder was on the trading block earlier this offseason. While he can still hit, his contract will become an albatross in the coming years, and his defensive ability leaves much to be desired.
Gregorius was previously in talks with the Cincinnati Reds and Oakland Athletics, both of which are in need of an upgrade at shortstop. The A’s, of course, lost Marcus Semien this offseason to the Toronto Blue Jays.
The Phillies made a promise to Bryce Harper in March of 2019 upon signing him to a ridiculous 13-year, $330 million deal — that they would field a competitive team. Two playoff-less seasons in just as many years with the club could have Harper wondering if that handshake agreement still stands. Yet, by adding Realmuto on a long-term deal, and bringing back key contributors like Gregorius, management is proving they do intend to build around their best overall talent after all.