The A Plus Interview

Yankees Shortstop Sir Didi Gregorius Hits A Home Run With His Positive Twitter Presence

"Even from negative stuff, you learn to be positive."

The A Plus Interview reimagines the celebrity interview by inviting artists to answer a short series of brief, poignant questions that strive to be more meaningful than those asked by others. Check back each month for the latest installment.

On the baseball field, Sir Didi Gregorius is the New York Yankees' shortstop, one of their all-star hitters, not to mention a modern-day knight. But online, he's simply @DidiG18, known for his positive social media presence.

After every game — win or lose — Gregorious posts a tweet celebrating his teammates' contributions to his more than 230,000 followers. You know it's a Didi tweet when it begins with #startspreadingthenews and features its fair share of emojis. 

A Plus sat down with one of baseball's greatest Twitter celebs to discuss the importance of spreading positivity on the Yankees, on social media, and everywhere in between. 

A Plus: With so many talented teammates, it's really good that we have emojis to characterize them by. So how do you come up with each player's emoji and do they get any input? 

Sir Didi Gregorius: No, they do not get any input about it so they can't pick, they can't decide. I just, just something that I think will fit for them, and I just put it and, you know, have some fun with it after that. 

A Plus: So, for example, the rookies usually get a little baby emoji or a bottle emoji, so what have their reactions been to that? Have they been loving it? 

Gregorius: Their reaction to my emojis, I think, is just whatever I put. I mean, I don't even know if they look at it, that's the thing. I mean, it's on the scoreboard before a game, but besides that, I don't really know if they're actually really, really looking at it. But they used to call us the "Baby Bombers"— all the young guys — so that's why I put the baby emoji for them, so I think that one fits. 

A Plus: So besides your team, how has been the fan reaction to your tweets? 

Gregorius: The fan reaction to my tweets ... I mean, some are really funny. I think people have a quiz about it, and all that stuff, but not everybody gets them right. And they keep asking me, 'Why is this person this emoji?' But I said since I started I would never explain why this person is the emoji ... I don't say why I have the emoji, but everybody has one. 

A Plus: One other emoji that you seem pretty interested in is the fire emoji. 

Gregorius: Yup.

A Plus: So let's talk about it. Is that your favorite emoji?

Gregorius: The fire emoji is actually not my favorite emoji. Nah. But ... 

A Plus: Oh, will you share? 

Gregorius: My favorite emoji? 

A Plus: Yeah.

Gregorius: 😜 ... The fire emoji, for me, I mean, we got everybody in the bullpen that throws hard, so that's one for the bullpen. And then, for the hitters, you know, [it's for] whoever is hot in that game. Like, for our fences, everybody's getting hits in the game, I put the fence and the fire emoji, so it means everybody contributed to that game.

A Plus: Overall, what do you hope fans take away when they see your tweets? 

Gregorius: Just positive stuff, you know. When they see my tweet, all I want is just positive vibes ... This game is already hard, and there's only so much you can control, and if you learn how to do that — and they, as fans, I think they know, too, but they want us to do really really good — so if you put something positive out there for them, I think they will really enjoy it and accept it. 

A Plus: So, going off of that, why do you think it's important to be a source of positivity on social media? 

Gregorius: I mean, a lot of stuff can happen on social media, you know? So if you keep it positive, a lot of people will see positive vibes, and you attract more positive people. So it's kind of like that, even though you could post something positive, somebody else is gonna jump out of nowhere and say something, but those are the things you cannot control. So you don't have to worry about that. As long as you try to keep people happy and just let them know what's going on in the game, like what we do after the game ... [and] have some fun with it. I think that's the most important thing for me. 

A Plus: Do you hope your Twitter inspires young baseball players to think about teamwork in a similar, positive way? 

Gregorius: I mean, it's not just young baseball players — just everybody. [I hope] it just inspires everybody to work together and to get and be where you want to be. If you want to be, like, a leader, you can't just demand stuff; you have to work with the people to get better. That's what I think so, as a leader, you can work on yourself to get better, and then you make the other people around you better, too. So that's the way I look at it. 

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Gregorius' Instagram is pretty positive, too! 

A Plus: Who inspired your positive outlook on life? 

Gregorius: My family inspired me to be really positive because, like I said, there's a lot of stuff that happens in life but you can always pick on the positive to get better at it, and you learn from the negative stuff. But you don't want the negative stuff to be stuck in your head the whole time, so staying positive, for me, is the best thing that I can have in my power. 

A Plus: Why do you think it's really important for people everywhere to just try to stay positive no matter what life throws at them? 

Gregorius: There's a lot of things you learn from. Even from negative stuff, you learn to be positive. I had a shirt I used to wear. It says, 'Turn negative into positive,' so there's a lot of negative stuff that happens, but you can pick the good part of it —even probably like 1 percent — and then you can build upon that and try to get better. So I think, for me, if you help each other get better, that's something really, really positive. And if you do that to that person, then maybe that person can do that to somebody else, so everybody can be happy. 

A Plus: Now you're talking about passing on the positivity, one thing that I've noticed with your tweets is that there seems to be something missing from pretty much all of them, and it's any mention of yourself ... So why do you think it's important to shine a spotlight on others rather than yourself? 

Gregorius: Because it's my Twitter, you know? It doesn't have to be about me. I think it's a team effort, no matter what you do. You could probably go out there and just do the best by yourself, but if the pitcher didn't do their job then ... we wouldn't win, so it's always about the whole team. I always looked at it that way since I was a kid, so there's no reason for me to change now that I'm here. So, for me, it was never about me because everybody has to come together because it's a team. If I wanted something to be about me, then I probably would've played tennis or, like, a one-person sport ... but this is a team. 

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