The New York Yankees are going to have to make a decision at shortstop sooner rather than later, as Gleyber Torres struggled to find his footing in 2020.
The Yankees initially believed that Torres could be the future at the position, but his failure to turn routine plays has put his future at the spot in question.
Even general manager Brian Cashman was unwilling to commit to Torres during a hot stove interview on YES Network. He stated that Torres was out of shape for the 2020 season due to the delay of spring training and admitted that second base is likely his preferable spot.
â€œ(Torres) wasnâ€™t in the best shape to start the second spring training,â€ Cashman said while on â€œYankees Hot Stoveâ€ on the YES Network on Thursday night. â€œOn his return from the shutdown, we spent a little bit â€¦ first half of the season playing catchup, maybe in the first 40 or 45 games of the season playing catchup. Once we got him back online and in shape, we saw, towards the last 20 games including the playoffs, the Gleyber Torres weâ€™re used to seeing.â€
â€œHeâ€™s more than capable of playing short, but I acknowledge he is a better second baseman than a shortstop,â€ Cashman said.
Nonetheless, next off-season presents a fantastic opportunity for the Yankees to snag a long-term shortstop off the free-agent market. Torres could theoretically move back to second base, but if the Yankees r-sign DJ LeMahieu, there will be no place for the young star. That is a debate for a different day, though.
MLB Insider Jeff Passan linked the Yankees to a number of shortstops next offseason, indicating they could ride with Gleyber Torres at the position in 2021 but prepare for a long-term change afterward.
â€œSome teams are already preparing for the shortstopalooza of next offseason, which, barring extensions, will featureÂ Javier Baez,Â Carlos Correa, Francisco Lindor,Â Corey SeagerÂ andÂ Trevor StoryÂ â€” five All-Stars, all of whom will hit free agency at 28 or younger. Among the teams that could find themselves in play: the Dodgers, Mets, Blue Jays, Phillies, Astros, Cubs,Â New York Yankees,Â San Francisco Giants,Â Los Angeles Angels,Â Texas RangersÂ andÂ Detroit Tigers.â€
With so many talented shortstops hitting the market, plenty of teams will be looking to upgrade the spot. If the Yankees arenâ€™t fully committed to Torres after 2021, they can easily make a change.
At 24 years old, the Yankees have four more years of control over Torres, so they can trade him for a hefty return or keep him and continue developing his weaknesses.