Yankees shortstop Gleyber Torre has been struggling to re-find himself for nearly two years. On the launching pad, it’s all system go now…
It’s no secret the Yankees have several players, minus Aaron Judge and Gio Urshela, struggling with the bat or staying on the field.
Since beginning the season at 5-10, the Yankees, with another victory today over the White Sox behind Gerrit Cole, have gone 22-9 to move to eight games over .500 and closing in on the division leaders Boston Red Sox.
But because of his offensive versatility, none of the Yankees have been missed more than Gleyber Torres.
Yankees: It Wasn’t An Outlier
In 2018 and 2019, Torres showed his versatility with the bat, reaching highs during 2019 in batting average (.278), 26 doubles, 38 home runs, 96 runs scored, and 90 driven home.
Like many in last year’s reduced and hop-scotched schedule, Torres tailed off considerably.
Called out with an unusual public scolding by Brian Cashman for being overweight and out of shape when he reported to the second Spring Training, Torres began to show signs of life until the playoffs.
When the Yankees re-signed DJ LeMahieu to be their regular second baseman for 2021, Torres was relegated to play out of position at shortstop. All the Yankees wanted and needed from is making the routine plays, hoping his bat would take care of the rest.
Alas, the season opened with Torres showing lapses in the field and on the bases as well. Still, Yankees manager Aaron Boone stuck with him, writing his name in the lineup.
Yankees: Gleyber Torres Leads The Way
Rewarded for his perseverance, Boone and Yankees fans see the resurgence of the player Gleyber Torres as a force in the Yankees lineup.
In the last 14 days, Torres is batting at a .348 clip with a .948 OPS – and that doesn’t include the three hits, two runs scored, and four RBI he has registered this afternoon against the AL Central-leading Chicago White Sox.
That comes on the back of Friday night’s 2-0 win over the White Sox that was all Gleyber Torres with a home run and a walk-off single.
Never a player to challenge for a batting title, Gleyber Torres puts together a unique assembly of tailor-made weapons for clutch hits that come late in games that could go either way.
Not of coincidence, the surge by Torres is simultaneous with the Yankees putting together a wounded, though effective, lineup to meet the best in the major leagues.
The Torres explosion couldn’t have come at a better time, though, as Luke Voit continues to find his way with his first at-bats of the season, while the Yankees continue to piece together a lineup to meet the challenge of each game.
Ryan LaMarre, a pickup expected to hold down the outfield, is on the IL, as is Giancarlo Stanton, who is day-to-day, and the perennially injured Aaron Hicks (out most likely for the season), forces Boone to rely on Brett Gardner as his center fielder, and out of position but always reliable Tyler Wade in one of the corners.
Oddly, the Yankees did it with a combination of pitching (Cole’s seven shutout innings) and what (of late) can only be considered a barrage of seven runs today at Yankee Stadium.
Yankees: Let’s Not Get Carried Away, But…
Let’s not get carried away, though, as the glass is still only half full for the Yankees. The team was only 3-12 with runners in scoring position (RISP), with Aaron Judge, Gio Urshela, Kyle Higashioka, and Mike Ford failing in their attempts, while Torres went 2-2.
This is big with Torres’s involvement, though, and the Yankees will walk away with their seventh straight series win, no matter what happens when Jameson Taillon squares off against Dallas Keuchel tomorrow at the Stadium before the Toronto Blue Jays arrive for yet another crucial series, with ramifications aplenty in the AL East.
The small ball went away (sort of) today as the Yankees pounded out seven runs after squeaking out wins with much less.
But the message to the rest of the league (now) is that we can do it both ways, and while the Bronx Bombers may be in hiding – they’re still there.
Here’s What Readers Are Saying…
Luis Garay What are you talking about in 2019 Gleyber was on fire. Last year it was only a 60 game season Steve Contursi, not to mention he was in really good shape then the season was stopped because of the pandemic. He came back out of shape which I gave him a pass because no one knew it was going to take place and they had no minor league games just a facility to get in shape. Last year they didn’t play 102 games so I wouldn’t even call it close to two years that he was struggling.
Henry Bee Yes, I was wrong about him as well. He is a SuperStar in the making. He does it all. Congratulations Gleyber Torres.
Frank Keefe Time committed pays off.
Steve Chang I feel good for the kid. His defense is starting to round out at SS. We all knew he was a gifted hitter but he is still very young and has a ton of potential!!
Russ Gordon He is pushing himself hard. That’s what you want in a good player