Gleyber David (Castro) Torres is entering his third season with the New York Yankees organization. Only 21, Torres has yet to don the pinstripes to play in a major league game, despite noisy calls from fans to see him play. Do the Yankees have a master plan for Torres, and if they do, when will they reveal it?
It would be fair to say that no Yankees player in recent memory has received more attention and fanfare than Gleyber Torres. From the moment Brian Cashman stole Torres from the pennant-hungry Chicago Cubs in the trade sending Aroldis Chapman to Wrigley Field, Gleyber Torres has been a marked man in the Yankees organization.
Tagged immediately as the top prospect in an already over-loaded minor league system, the Yankees have continuously fended off pleas from fans and media to “bring him up”. Brian Cashman, on numerous occasions when asked, has defended the Yankees by pointing out the lack of experience and young age as reasons to rein in Torres.
The latest hype involving Gleyber Torres surrounds the show and tell battle for third base, scheduled to begin in Spring Training in a couple of weeks with Miguel Andujar. Except that it’s all fake news, and none of it is good for Torres unless he lights up the preseason with one of his Arizona Fall League (MVP 2017) type performances, embarrassing the Yankees into adding the young man to the team going North.
Otherwise, it appears certain the Yankees plan for Torres is to start him at Triple-A Scranton with design in mind to manipulate a seventh year (typically six) of team control over their number one prospect. Accordingly, the earliest Gleyber Torres will be seen in a Yankees uniform is May 1 or so. And by then, who knows what the Yankees will look like regarding the composition of their infield?
Todd Frazier is out of the picture now signed with the Mets. But Eduardo Nunez and Mike Moustakas are not as talk prevails that the Yankees would like to add one of them before the season begins. Moustakas is likely tied to what happens with Yu Darvish, as there is only room for one of them on the payroll. Last, but never least, is the presence of Ronald Torreyes as a super-sub capable of playing a full season with proven skills and production.
So where does that leave Gleyber Torres? Most Yankees fans were shocked when the Yankees were playing dodgeball with the Pittsburgh Pirates over Geritt Cole, and the Pirates had the gall to ask for Torres as the number-one chip in the deal. Was that a sign of the Yankees faith in Torres? Or was it that the Pirates also wanted Clint Frazier and the overall price for Cole was (correctly) judged to be too high?
At the moment, the Yankees are very high on Andujar, and unless he falls flat on his butt, Andujar will be the starting third baseman when the team heads to Toronto for Opening Day on March 29. This leaves second base as the only option that includes Torres. And that’s only if Cashman doesn’t add a Nunez or even a retread like Neil Walker before the season opens.
If the Yankees have a master plan for Gleyber Torres, it can’t be held secret too much longer. It would nice, though, to see Torres bust through everything, taking control of his destiny to the point where he says to the Yankees, “Take that! Where am I batting in the lineup tonight?”