Gleyber Torres isn’t expected to make the Major League’s out of Spring Training this year. However, the Yankees are impressed with how Torres has managed to handle himself while in big league camp.
Even with Torres’ torrid Spring (.478 with two homers, five RBI and a triple), the Yankees expect Torres to start the season in the minors. But the young prospect has already shown promise at second base and shortstop.
“Ever since we got him he’s been a performer,” Yankees manager Brian Cashman said prior to the Yankees 3-1 win over the Philadelphia Phillies on Wednesday night. “I love his makeup. It’s very impressive that as a 20-year-old he commands the English language as well as he does being from another country (Venezuela).”
Torres and outfielder Billy McKinney came to the Yankees in a blockbuster deal that sent closer Aroldis Chapman to the Chicago Cubs last season. Chapman has since returned to the Yankees on a five-year, $85 Million deal to be the Yankees closer.
“We had him as their No. 1 prospect because of what we saw on the field,” Cashman said. “So I can’t say he’s better than what we expected because we had him rated pretty high.”
Girardi’s comparison of Torres and Cabrera’s maturity comes from experience; Girardi managed Cabrera while he was with the Florida Marlins in 2006. Cabrera’s strong season not only made him the slugger a household name, he also helped Girardi win NL Manager of the Year honors that season.
“When I had him, he was incredible,” Girardi said of Cabrera. “He was (23) when I had him in the big leagues, and he’d already been there for like nine years. At that age, Miguel was really mature.”
Torres appreciates the comparison from Girardi, and the comparison was well deserved. Torres handled himself with class during the Spring, and if he continues he could be one of the next big names to hail from the Yankees organization.
“From the beginning I told myself why would I add any pressure?” Torres said. “Why would I start thinking too much and add that pressure? Because all I have to do is do what I’ve been doing ever since I was a kid – playing baseball. And to me, that’s the key: just keep on doing the things I know how to do and things will be fine.”