It really is the Year of the Gleyber.
With the game tied 2-2, Torres’ first homer on Saturday followed a Didi Gregorius solo shot. The fourth-inning blast to right center by Torres off Zach Plesac put the Yankees up 4-2. Torres’ sixth-inning smash to left off Nick Wittgren gave the Yankees a 6-4 lead and the eventual game winning hit.
Torres, who has a team-high 29 home runs, could become just the second baseman in the past 100 years to lead the Yankees in home runs, following Robinson Cano (2013). His multi-homer game gave him 7 on the year, another one would tie the 22-year-old with Babe Ruth, Mickey Mantle and Alex Rodriguez for the single-season franchise mark.
“We saw his power last year. We’ve watched him these last two years. He’s got the ability to hit the ball out to all fields,” manager Aaron Boone said. “He’s obviously very strong. The ground force that he creates in his swing lends itself to power. He’s got one of those pulls and it seems to go a little further than you think it’s gonna go and that’s because the power is real.”
Torres has been on the verge of tying or breaking records since the All-star break. He recently joined Yankee legends Joe DiMaggio and Mantle to make multiple All-Star teams before turning 23. The 22-year-old has had 9 homers in the past 11 home games.
Many criticized GM Brian Cashman for not trading for a starting pitcher by the deadline. But considering that Torres was on the top of everyone’s wish list, the best move was to do nothing.
Torres was acquired in the deal that sent Aroldis Chapman to the Cubs. Sure, Aroldis won a championship with the Cubs, but then went right back to his former team and now leads the league with 35 saves. The Yankees closer is having a brilliant August. Chapman has 35 saves in 40 opportunities this season and has converted his last ten chances. The 31-year-old has not allowed a single run in seven August appearances, striking out 13 and walking just two.
The Yankees will look to win the series vs Cleveland as CC Sabathia takes the mound against Mike Clevinger.