Originally posted on Fox Sports Arizona  |  Last updated 12/11/12
PHOENIX The Diamondbacks made a bold move involving two top prospects Tuesday when they acquired their shortstop of the future, Didi Gregorius, while severing ties with top 2011 draft pick Trevor Bauer in a three-team trade. The D-backs acquired Gregorius in atwo-step deal that first saw Cleveland trade outfielder Shin-Soo Choo to Cincinnati for outfielder Drew Stubbs and Gregorius. The D-backs then acquired Gregorius, left-hander Tony Sipp and first baseman Lars Anderson for Bauer and right-handers Matt Albers and Bryan Shaw to complete the eight-player deal. Gregorius, 22, is considered to be one of the top shortstop prospects in baseball, although it is unclear if he would be ready for the major leagues in 2013 after splitting time between Class AA Pensacola and Class AAA Louisville last season. He hit .300 in 20 at-bats with the Reds after being recalled last September. A native of Curacao, Gregorius impressed scouts in the 2012 Arizona Fall League, where he hit .284.333.392 in 20 games with the Peoria Javelinas. Gregorius, 6-foot-1, is said to have good range and a strong arm. He has 20 home runs in 443 minor leagues games after signing at 17, but one scout said, he has a chance at the plate. D-backs general manager Kevin Towers said in his postseason press conference Oct. 4 that he would like to add a shortstop, and he also said that it could be a two-tiered move, getting one for the present and another for the future. The D-backs acquired shortstop Cliff Pennington in a three-team trade Nov. 20 that sent Chris Young to Oakland and brought Heath Bell to Arizona. The D-backs also pursued Cleveland shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera at the winter meetings, where the Indians were said to be seeking a package of three or four prospects in return. Gregorius is more attractive in one regard, inasmuch as he will be under team control for the next six years, while Cabrera is eligible for free agency when his contract expires following the 2014 season. Gregorius hit .289 with seven homers and 44 RBIs in 82 games in 2011 before hitting .265 with seven homers and 54 RBIs in the minors last season. Bauer was the third overall pick in the 2011 draft and was the D-backs minor league pitcher of the year after going 14-2 with a 2.38 ERA at Class AA Mobile and Class AAA Reno, when he won two Pacific Coast League playoff games and started the Aces Class AAA championship victory, although he did not get the decision. His major league time was much rockier. He threw six shutout innings to beat the Los Angeles Dodgers, 7-1, on July 8, but he had command and control issues in his other three D-backs starts, striking out 17 but walking 13 in 16 13 innings. Bauer strictly adhered to the extended warmup regimen and throwing program that helped him set Pac-12 strikeouts records at UCLA in his first season with the D-backs, although by the end of the season his fastball velocity was down from the 96-97 mph range into the 90-91 mph range. The trade marks a meteoric fall from grace for Bauer, who was virtually untouchable a year ago. Bauer called teammates and admitted he made mistakes in 2012, D-backs presidentCEO Derrick Hall said at a team golf outing and fund-raiser in November. Follow Jack Magruder on Twitter
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