Diamondbacks knew about Didi Gregorius' elbow

There comes a point in our time as fans or our time as baseball writers where we forget an important part of team management.  Part of what we do as fans and writers is analyze, dig deeper, and second guess.  This often leads to us simply forgetting that the men and women in Major League front offices are smart.  Smarter than us in some cases.  They may not always do what we think they should.  They may not always do the most ethical things.  But there is no questioning the intelligence in these front offices.  And it is with that in mind that we need to understand the Arizona Diamondbacks knew of Didi Gregorius' elbow problem, and they had no trouble trading for him even with that knowledge.

There were initial reports that the Diamondbacks did not do a proper physical or proper medical background check on Gregorius.  That is simply not the case.  Kevin Towers, the DBacks GM, said the team knew that Gregorius had hurt his elbow preparing for the World Baseball Classic.  Gregorius was doing so in December when Arizona acquired him.  They knew.

The other thing to remember with this injury is that it is not all that serious, at least from what's been said publicly.  Gregorius has a strained UCL.  It's not torn, there's no surgery involved, it's just a strain. Rest will usually resolve a strain as long as it's enough rest.  If the team were to rush him out onto the field this spring, he could damage the elbow further and even tear it.  If Gregorius were to suffer a tear, it would be a major setback, but not the end of the world.  The resulting Tommy John surgery would require less down time than it would for a pitcher.  Gregorius would be back on the field within six months.

Gregorius is a key player in the offseason transactions that will determine Kevin Towers' success as a GM with the team.  Many have questioned the direction the team has taken since last season.  They have traded away some of their top talent (Trevor Bauer and Justin Upton), and they've received risky or marginal players.  Gregorius falls into both categories.  Many across the league think Gregorius can be great, but he has only played eight games in the Majors.  It will take some time to evaluate his true skill set.  In fact, the Diamondbacks were not even sure Gregorius would be able to make the club out of spring training had he not been shelved with the injury.

And that's why there has been so much focus on Gregorius in Arizona.  His success is important to the team's foundation going forward.  The Diamondbacks traded away their top pick from 2011 to get Gregorius.  They put all their eggs (at least their middle infield eggs) in the Gregorius basket.  If the team messed up when evaluating an injury, that could spell doom for the team.  But that's not what happened.

Gregorius is 22 years old.  He'll bounce back from an elbow strain.  Once he is rested, Gregorius will likely be assigned to Triple-A Reno, and he'll make his way to the Majors in no time.  Rest easy, Diamondbacks fans.  Gregorius will prove to be the talent you all hoped.


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10 Responses to Diamondbacks knew about Didi Gregorius' elbow

  1. 'Gregorius will prove to be the talent you all hoped'

    lol... thanks for the checking your crystal ball for us there Justin...

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  2. It makes the trade of Bauer for Didi even that much more idiotic. Not only did the Diamondbacks apparently know Didi had a fatigued shoulder, but they did not do a full physical. How is that acting intelligently as a front office?
    It's bad enough my favorite team goes off and trades a potential ace, but now we learn we traded a pitcher with huge potential for damaged goods. Ouch!
    No, I am not happy about the trade and I don't need an office of "smart" baseball geniuses to tell me I should change my mind.

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  3. I used my magic 8 ball, not my crystal ball.

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  4. The trade happened December 11th. In the article you linked, Towers was quoted as saying the injury happened around "Christmas time".

    Are you 100% sure on the timeline or are you speculating ?

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    Replies
    1. The Christmas time quote from Towers is more of the speculation. That's when Gregorius stopped throwing, but the injury itself likely occurred before that. They didn't do a physical on him, but there is a very good chance the club knew about the soreness he had been experiencing.

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  5. Hey if you're going to write about injuries, you should know the difference between a sprain and a strain. Your info on Gregorius is wrong because your knowledge is secondhand and terrible.

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    Replies
    1. You're right there is a difference. Not one that makes a big enough difference to impact the article, but you are absolutely correct. And remember, we're not doctors here. We are covering the reported news. A difference between a sprain and a strain is something just about every writer will make. In fact, many medical records label these types of injuries Sprain/strain because the difference is so negligible. Thanks!

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  6. Trevor Bauer is less risking that Gregorius? According to the Bruin alums I know Trevor has great ability and is an uncoachable know-it-all. A Colby Rasmus type.

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  7. Justin, your comment above is pure speculation. You have no idea when the injury actually occurred or when Towers had any knowledge of it. You just think it's "likely" that he knew before the trade occurred. What is your justification for that "Likely" ? What EXACTLY is this based on ?

    This is what pasess for injury "News" on this site ? Sorry....thats not news. Thats your own baseless speculation on events and timelines you seem to have grossly misinterprested or misrepresented, or both.

    The fact that you worded things so emphatically that Towers knew before hand is rather damning actually. You had no basis for such a strongly worded post.

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    Replies
    1. If the basis of the article is to say we as fans know far less than we think, what's so damning about that? I get the uproar here about knowing vs. speculating, but all opinion articles are speculation inherently. The point is, MLB front office personnel are not infallible, but we often mistakenly assume they always mess up when something like this happens. My OPINION is that they did not make a mistake and they know what they're getting in Gregorius regardless of the injury.

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