It is no secret the New York Yankees considered trading starting infielder Gleyber Torres at the trade deadline this past summer. Torres was a target for the Miami Marlins, who were thinking of offloading SP Pablo Lopez, but the Yankees didn’t want to give up some of their premier prospects in a prospective deal.
At 26 years old, Torres is coming off a bounce-back season, hitting .257 with a .310 OBP, 24 homers, and 76 RBIs. This is the first time he hit double-digit homers since 2019, so it’s nice to see his power stroke returning.
Nonetheless, selling high on him with two years of control might be an advisable move for management, but it seems as if they are committed to retaining him for the first few months of the season while they filter out inefficient infielders.
There is still concern that LeMahieu will have issues with his toe in 2023, and the Yankees don’t necessarily want to start Josh Donaldson or Isiah Kiner-Falefa. If LeMahieu can prove he’s healthy, starting him on the hot corner makes the most sense, and Oswald Peraza projects to win the starting shortstop battle.
However, if management decides they need to play Donaldson and his $21M salary, DJ could shift over to second base, making Torres expendable. In addition, Anthony Volpe is expected to be called up at some point, and when he does, he will earn significant reps. Multiple variables diminish Torres’s value, but that doesn’t make him any less of an impact player that could have a tremendous campaign.
Gleyber Torres, who was offered to the Marlins for Lopez ahead of last year’s trade deadline. DJ LeMahieu can easily replace Torres at second base, and the New York Yankees have a glut of other middle infielders in incumbent shortstop Isiah Kiner-Falefa and three talented young players — Oswald Peraza, Anthony Volpe and Oswaldo Cabrera. Torres, who has two years of control remaining, has tailed off offensively in recent years and might benefit from a change of scenery. Trading him, meanwhile, could allow the Yankees to plug remaining holes in left field and the back end of their bullpen.According to Alden Gonzalez of ESPN, Torres is expednable.
The Yankees may get an even better version of Gleyber Torres in 2023:
Torres’s Steamer projections have him hitting .262 with a .327 OBP, 23 homers, and 73 RBIs with a 120 wRC+ next season. If he’s able to elevate his numbers across the board and maintain his defensive quality, trading Torres may end up biting the Yankees in the butt. He was a 2.7 WAR player last year and projects to be a 3.4 WAR player in 2023.
Adding over three wins to the Yankees’ total by his play alone would be a fantastic return, and traditionally he’s been dangerous in the postseason as an offensive weapon.
Specifically, he’s hit .281 with a .364 OBP, five homers, and 17 RBIs across 31 playoff games. That is quite stellar in the batter’s box, and with his defense taking a significant step forward, the Bombers can be confident in his performance.
While Torres struggled in the most recent postseason, he’s historically been a good player in that facet. In fact, he hits far better toward the top of the order, so I wonder if manager Aaron Boone will change the batting order a bit to build on that strength.
Nonetheless, Torres could be the odd man out at the deadline next summer, but for now, his job seems to be safe until the Yankees can rely on DJ LeMahieu on an everyday basis and Anthony Volpe is ready to be promoted.