New York Yankees Player Profiles: Gio Urshela, the real deal becomes a superstar (video)

New York Yankees, Gio Urshela

Last year the New York Yankees had a “newfound 3rd baseman” Gio Urshela.  With all the Yankee Injuries last season, many triple-A stars made it to the bigs and had a chance to show off their talents and give the team a reason to keep them in the majors. Gio Urshela is such a player who filled in for Miguel Andujar at third base.

Last night, in Cleveland, Ohio, the excellent defender and timely hitter became a New York Yankee superstar. The game against the Cleveland Indians in the 2020 Wild Card round will most certainly become a Yankee Classic on the YES Network.  In the fourth inning, with the bases loaded, Gio Urshela hit a Grand Slam putting the Yankees ahead in a game they were losing 4-1. In the eight inning, he also had the defensive play of the game, turning a double play while lying on his back. He also propelled the Yankee to win in front of his old team. When all is said and done, DJ LeMahieu, who became the only player to win the batting title in both leagues, and Luke Voit winning the home run title, will take the spotlight away from Urshela.  But, there is no way to deny that Gio is a superstar for the Yankees.

Twenty-eight-year-old Giovanny Urshela is a Columbian baseball player for our Yankees. He has previously played the for the Toronto Blue Jays and the Cleveland Indians. Urshela signed with the Cleveland Indians as an international free agent in July 2008. He made his professional debut in 2009, playing for the Dominican Summer League Indians and the Arizona League Indians. He spent 2010-2013 in single-A. He started the 2014 season with Akron and was promoted to the Columbus Clippers of the Class AAA International League during the season.

After the 2014 season, the Indians added Urshela to their 40-man roster. He was named the Indians’ fourth-best prospect by in 2015. He batted .227 for the Indians before being traded to the Toronto Blue Jays. Urshela batted .233 with one home run and three RBIs in 19 games for Toronto before he was designated for assignment by the Blue Jays on June 26. During his time with the Jays, he was noted for his timely hitting and very capable play on the 3rd. Base.

On August 4, 2018, the Blue Jays traded Urshela to the New York Yankees in exchange for cash considerations. The Yankees assigned him to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders. Urshela was called up by the Yankees to the bigs on April 6, 2019, as a fill-in for Miguel Andujar at third base. Urshela has been an out-making specialist in the big leagues and has certainly shown his worth at the hot corner.

In his brief stay with the Yankees, he has played well at 3rd, even making spectacular plays that many wonders if Andujar could have made, considering that Miguel’s play at third has been questioned. Gio is well-liked in the clubhouse and fits in quite well. Some of this may be his not so young age and experience. So far, although not a home run hitter, he is a timely hitter. He played so well he has received praise from manager Aaron Boone and a tweet of support from the Columbian President.

The New York Yankees expected that he would be able to handle third base. What they didn’t expect was his discipline, timely and powerful hitting behind the plate. It was a win-win situation for the Yankees as they got Glove Glove-like defense at third base and a powerful bat at the plate. When Gio would make near impossible plays at third, he became an immediately loved Yankee player.

As the season progressed, Urshela just got better and better. He ended the season with the second-highest batting average, only second to MVP DJ LeMahieu. Gio’s average was .314 with a .889 OPS and a career-high 21 home runs in just 132 games. With the start of the 2020 season, it appears that Gio hasn’t missed a beat. In just nine games, he has four home runs, a batting average of .300, and an incredible 1.067 OPS. Gio ended the shortened coronavirus season batting .298 second only to DJ LeMahieu for players in 20 games or more.

After the last season and going into this one, many Yankee fans and the Yankee brass were still wondering if Urshela’s 2019 season was just a fluke. The answer, he is no fluke, he’s the real deal a superstar, a man on a mission to help the Yankees to their 28th World Championship.