As baseball fans, we love to quantify things. Statistics are a very close friend. In the acquisition of shortstop Didi Gregorius, a lot of talk was made about his numbers at the plate. A lifetime .240 hitter, he has struggled even more hitting lefties with .184 average against southpaws. All of these numbers are important and noteworthy, of course, but what seems to be ailing Gregorius in the beginning of this season is something that can't be quantified.
Say it however you want; "it's the New York City lights," "it's the pinstripes." Either way, he is trying to do too much. He wants to be the hero. You can see it in some of the mistakes he's made already. He was caught trying to steal third in the opener, and he was also picked off rounding first base too far on a RBI single. There's a fine line between aggressive and trying to do too much. Gregorius is erring on the latter.
Gregorius is not alone in this either. Brian McCann admitted that he let his surroundings hurt his game last year. Plenty of players fall into the trap. It seems to be an easy one to fall into, especially for Gregorius, as he attempts to replace someone like Derek Jeter. The Yankees have a rich history and it must be difficult to try to make your mark. You can't blame Gregorius.
If the new shortstop wants to succeed in New York he has to know his worth. He's an excellent defender, and he needs to do well there. The Yankees also need him to do well there. The offensive woes are fixable, but likely won't ever be amazing. He'll need to make his mark in the field, but none of that is possible if he can't keep his cool out there.
Gregorius is a really special player. He has the potential to be a really great shortstop. He also seems like the player that can handle the pressure. He's been accountable after making mistakes. When talking about replacing Jeter he handles himself fine. Gregorius certainly can be great, but if he is blinded by the spotlight he won't be able to develop.