Yankees shortstop Gleyber Torres will soon return to the team. But when Aaron Boone draws up his playoff roster, Torres will not be on it.
So far, the Yankees have been fortunate in blending in players returning from the Injured List (IL). Aaron Boone has managed, for example, to provide at-bats to both Gio Urshela and Luke Voit, and both have responded with immediate production.
Gleyber Torres is an odd piece, and he collides directly with newcomer Andrew Velazquez and the Yankees’ super-utility man Tyler Wade.
Boone will go through the motions when Torres returns, starting him in multiple games, but his heart, as well as his brain, tells him Velazquez is the better player for the Yankees.
Torres could, and the Yankees will welcome this as well, return with a burst of energy, production, and expertise in the field – none of which we saw from him before his injury.
On the contrary, Velazquez has provided all of those elements for the Yankees and Boone.
Yankees: The Gleyber Torres Enigma
While Torres does not qualify as a player with veteran stature, shortstop was his position, and the general rule in baseball is that players do not lose their status with their team due to injury.
But as with any rule, exceptions can be made, and there is one the Yankees should make when the time rolls around for Aaron Boone to complete his 26-man roster for the playoffs.
No matter how you cut it, Torres has been a major disappointment to the Yankees for two seasons, and it’s not only his fast-declining skills with the bat.
At times, Torres appears to be sleepwalking through a game, whether it’s a faux pas on the basepaths or an errant throw on a routine play – something is “off.”
Velazquez, contrary to what many might think, is not a rookie. He’s 27 and has four years in the majors under his belt.
The myth surrounding him as the “kid” from the Bronx has helped, but so has the fact that Boone likes him – a lot – and already Yankees’ insiders are pointing to Boone choosing Velazquez over Torres.
If it happens, the demotion for Torres will still allow him to be on the Yankees’ “taxi squad” as a player available in the event a player is injured, and he will be in uniform and can be in the Yankees’ dugout.
Yankees: This One Will Be On Aaron Boone
This is not one of those calls that are likely to be handed down to Boone from above. Gleyber Torres is not one of the Yankees, who must be in the lineup by their money.
Instead, it’s one of those rare calls a manager gets to make on his own and based solely on his instincts.
For Gleyber Torres though, his time with the Yankees is in flux, and we could see him moved during the offseason.
Why? Well, for one, with the acquisition of Anthony Rizzo, who despite rumors of wanting to return to the Cubs as a free agent might still be convinced he’s good where he’s at, and Luke Voit at first base, one Yankees plan for the future disintegrates.
Meaning, while the idea of the Yankees signing one of the premier shortstops available as a free agent for 2022 remains a possibility if the team goes that way, the plan to move Torres back to second base and DJ LeMahieu to first base is negated, leaving Torres the odd man out.
Meanwhile, Velazquez can be groomed as another Tyler Wade if the Yankees land a Trevor Story type of shortstop. Either way, there is no place on the Yankees for Gleyber Torres.
Yankees: The Pressure Is On Torres, Not Boone
No one is inside the head of Gleyber Torres, but at this point in his career, a change of scenery might be best for him.
He came to the Yankees as a budding stud, and in 20 season19, he put up numbers that befitted that title. But even with last year’s abbreviated season, his downslide is evident.
Gleyber Torres still has a sky-high trade value based on his pedigree as the number one pick in the Chicago Cubs’ draft before they traded in for Aroldis Chapman and a World Championship in 2015.
Yankees: Velazquez Is Not Cemented Either…But…
Andrew Velazquez is not the shortstop the Yankees are looking for or need long-range, but neither is Torres, so adjustments must be made.
In the coming weeks, those adjustments will be immediate and not long-range, but as for the offseason, hold your breath as the Yankees sort this out.
Velazquez wins, and Torres loses – that’s the way it goes in baseball at cruThanks for the input, and without objection, I’ll be adding your comment to the article shortly.nch time, and let the chips fall where they may…
Here’s What Readers Are Saying…
Frank Tedeschi It is Torres job to lose. Yanks are not signing a free agent shortstop next year. Gleyber was not a number one Cubs pick. He was never drafted
Patricia Winters Glick Bet the house he’s on it
John O’Sh IF the Yankees make the post-season, what makes you believe that Aaron Boone will make up the roster and not Cashman?
Daniel J Trinh Bitter truth, I have never seen a decline with a player of GT’s talent and billing in all of my 30 plus years watching the yanks or MLB. Such a decline warrants more than a demotion but a trade and it is most beneficial for him not the organization in the long run. I can see him shine and get back to some semblance of his rookie year form but it will take tough love like the one the Yanks are giving to Luke Voit. I hope GT has lots of luck but this team, our team, has been built on a WS-winning caliber team for 3-4 years now, and having him in our defensive and offensive lineup is a liability.
Craig Weiser Torres needs the best September of his career otherwise I can see Torres being left off the roster in October.
Rich Beneski People don’t understand that those who make the decisions and know baseball don’t get wrapped up in a good story like Velazquez and understand that a 24-year-old 2x all-star isn’t to be given up on bc of what comes outs to be what Velazquez has produced during his time in the bigs. And Torres is not as bad defensively. Tatis and Baez 2 SS who people think highly of defensively have 20 errors compared to Gleyber’s 14. Story has 10 himself and didi even has more than Torres. People never forget how bad he looked last year but he’s adequate as worst and better overall than Velazquez can ever become.
Carmen Pezzula If Torres is healthy, he will be on the postseason roster
Teddy Paulmeno I think he is the odd man out
Closing Published Comments And Final Thoughts
Game time on the way, so we’ll close published comments on this one.
Readers are split on Torres, and that’s the way I expected it to go. After all, he is the Yankees starting shortstop. Go Nestor!