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Wednesday, March 19, 2014
Source: D-backs peddling Didi, not Owings

By Adam Rubin


Chris Humphreys/USA TODAY SportsDidi Gregorius may be traded by the D-backs for an MLB-ready starting pitcher.
PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- The Arizona Diamondbacks are making Didi Gregorius, not fellow shortstop Chris Owings, available in trade discussions with other teams, an industry source told ESPNNewYork.com.

The D-backs seek an MLB-ready starting pitcher in return, hoping to offset the loss of intended Opening Day starter Patrick Corbin with a UCL tear.

A trio of Arizona scouts, including special assistant Todd Greene, watched a Mets intrasquad game involving Double-A and Triple-A players Tuesday on a back field at the Port St. Lucie complex. Noah Syndergaard, Logan Verrett and Jacob deGrom, who all may be in Triple-A Las Vegas' rotation to open the season, pitched in that game. Syndergaard almost certainly is off-limits in Mets discussions.

Gregorius, 24, hit .252 with seven homers and 28 RBIs and had a .332 on-base percentage in 404 plate appearances with the D-backs last season. He was acquired by Arizona from the Reds on Dec. 11, 2012 in a three-team trade that also landed Shin-Soo Choo in Cincinnati.

The scouting report on the ESPN Fantasy Projection reads:

A defensive whiz, Gregorius is unfortunately not much with the stick. Sure, he batted .322 in his first 38 games for the Arizona Diamondbacks, but from that point forward, he hit .202/.294/.284 in 65 contests, unable to do much with anything other than pitches left over the middle of the plate. His defense might be valuable enough to the Diamondbacks that he'll earn the starting shortstop job this spring, and he's knowledgeable enough of the strike zone -- he had a 9.2 percent walk rate in 2013.