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Gleyber Torres – Another Example of Brian Cashman’s Excellence

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They say the best trades are the ones that you do not make. But in this case, the best trade is the one where you obtain a blue chip prospect for a dominating veteran and then the latter returns a few months later as a free agent. But even if that wasn’t the case, the acquisition of Glyber Torres by the New York Yankees was a stroke of brilliance by general manager Brian Cashman, who has had many during his tenure as the architect of the most popular sports franchise on the globe.

It was July of 2016 and Cashman recognized that the Yankees  – a franchise whose ownership and fanbase except nothing less than a championship as a positive season – were not going to make a postseason run and had many assets to sell off to those teams ahead of them. One deep and strong point of that Yankees roster was the bullpen and Cashman saw an opportunity to flip a few relievers in exchange for a few top prospects – something that their farm system was lacking.

Two trades later and Cashman added the likes of Gleyber Torres, Clint Frazier, Justus Sheffield and J.P. Feyereisen. Aroldis Chapman helped the Chicago Cubs win their first World Series since 1908 and Andrew Miller was a pivotal member of the American League pennant-winning Cleveland Indians advancing to the Fall Classic in 20 years. So the trades satisfied all the teams involved, but Chapman’s return to the Bronx made it a slam dunk win for the Yanks.

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Torres has been the centerpiece of the activity near and on the trade deadline three years ago. He made his Major League Baseball debut in 2018 and made an immediate impact as the starting second baseman. Torres, a two-time All-Star, has even surpassed the scout’s predictions with a .275, 38 home runs and 101 RBI career average. But he – like many a Bomber before him – has postseason tunnel vision and came right out of the box in the 2019 American League Division Series versus the Minnesota Twins strong with key early hit with runners on base, something that has he has waited a year to amend.

“Last year, we lost really early and I was the last out in that series,” he said, referring to the four-game sweep ouster at the hands of the eventual World Series champion Boston Red Sox. “Just take all the experience from last year and put it [sic] this year in my game and just try to do my job.”

Torres’s two RBI got the Yankees going and they ended up routing Minnesota 10-4. But that bases loaded hit set the tone for the rest of the game (being down 0-2 and working the counting full), something that was not lost on Yankees manager Aaron Boone.

“It was a huge at-bat,” he said, “obviously, in that game. We’re kind of looking for that kind of hit. We created some pretty good traffic to that point and that hit, I think, really got us going from there.”

The Yankees took both games in the Bronx and now head to the Twin Cities looking for a sweep in the best-of-five ALDS. No doubt that Torres will have more opportunities for big moments and make his general manager look even better than he does already.

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