The New York Yankees are expected to be big players at the July 31 trade deadline, but that doesn’t mean the team has any intention of parting with rookie sensation Gleyber Torres.
Longtime Yankees general manager Brian Cashman made that much clear before Friday’s game against the Tampa Bay Rays, responding to speculation about Torres being used as a trade chip with one sensible, forward-thinking response.
Brian Cashman scoffed when someone asked him if he’d consider trading Gleyber Torres.
“I’ve got to walk around this town!”
— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) June 15, 2018
It’s a tongue-in-cheek response from Cashman, but he obviously knows the audience he’s playing to here too. Yankees fans would not be pleased to see Torres go so soon after taking Major League Baseball by storm.
Why is trading Gleyber Torres not an option?
Since being promoted to the majors on May 4, Torres has been the Yankees most consistent hitter. That’s saying a lot for a lineup that includes established stars like Giancarlo Stanton, Aaron Judge and Didi Gregorius.
In fact, Torres has been among the most dangerous hitters in the entire league. During his time in the big leagues, only Boston’s J.D. Martinez (16) has hit more home runs than Torres (13). Oakland’s Khris Davis also hit 13 during that time.
Torres’ home run tear has been unexpected. In 370 games at the minor-league level, Torres only hit 24 home runs. Total. And never once did he hit more than 11 in a single season. In his first 45 MLB games, he hit 13.
The home run pace might not be sustainable, but the Yankees undoubtedly see his power as a bonus anyway. Torres was already one the game’s top prospects for his ability to make contact and get on base, his versatility in the field — Torres is a shortstop by trade, but he’s had no issues manning second base in New York — and his intelligence.
“I think in Gleyber’s case he’s a really smart player,” manager Aaron Boone recently told the New York Daily News. “I’ve talked about his instincts a lot, talking about his instincts in the field a lot, well that carries over to the plate too. But also because he’s really talented, and I think the swing that he has gives him an opportunity to make those kind of adjustments and to be successful.”
He’s what scouts call a keeper, and the Yankees are certainly one team that can afford hanging on to a player who may break the bank someday.
What will the Yankees seek at the trade deadline?
A frontline starting pitcher for sure.
Teams with pitching to trade will no doubt inquire about Torres, but Cashman had a deep enough minor league system at his disposal to work a deal without including Torres.
Remember, the Yankees still have highly-regarded prospect Clint Frazier in the minors. Their minor-league pitching depth is among the best in baseball, making acquiring a difference maker in 2018 all the more likely.
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