The Yankees have 2 prospects who could replace Gleyber Torres in 2025

MLB: Spring Training-New York Yankees at Detroit Tigers
Mike Watters-USA TODAY Sports

At the current pace of Yankees second baseman Gleyber Torres, it seems unlikely the team will offer him a long-term deal. General Manager Brian Cashman has previously attempted to trade Torres and has been notably silent on any extension talks for him while actively pursuing a long-term commitment to Juan Soto, whom the Yankees aim to keep for at least the next decade.

Financial Constraints and the Yankees’ Prospects

Torres has shown value, but also inconsistency throughout his career, and this pattern continues in 2024. Over the first 56 games, he’s batting .229/.304/.327 with four homers and 16 RBIs, and his 86 wRC+ suggests he’s performing 14% below the average MLB hitter.

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at New York Yankees, gleyber torres
Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

However, paying Torres more than $15 million per season doesn’t necessarily align with their financial plans. Recently, managing partner Hal Steinbrenner stated that the team needs to reduce its payroll next year since its current expenditures are unsustainable.

If that is the case, the Yankees will take all of the money they have available and allocate it to Soto, but that means letting go of some of their veteran talent, like Anthony Rizzo and Torres. Parting ways with both players should open up around $35 million, which is more than enough to sign Soto if they add it to his current $31 million salary. That would leave some extra money to reinforce the infield or starting pitching.

Prospects Ready to Step Up

However, if the Yankees want to cut costs at second base, they have two prospects who will likely compete for the starting job.

Jorbit Vivas was recently acquired from the Los Angeles Dodgers this past off-season, and Caleb Durbin, a homegrown talent, could make a push for the job. Vivas has just recently returned from an injury, playing only eight games in Triple-A this year but dominating High-A Hudson Valley over 18 games before his eventual promotion. Vivas hit .225 with a .339 OBP last year with the Dodgers’ Triple-A affiliate.

The Yankees like his defensive qualities at second base and believe he can be a solid lefty hitter, but he needs further offensive development. Durbin is further along and has some unique skills. At 24 years old, the 5’6″ infielder can also play on the corner, but his strongest position is second base.

MLB: Spring Training-New York Yankees at Detroit Tigers
Mar 23, 2024; Lakeland, Florida, USA; New York Yankees third baseman Caleb Durbin (87) bats during the third inning against the Detroit Tigers at Publix Field at Joker Marchant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mike Watters-USA TODAY Sports

This year with Triple-A Scranton, Durbin has already played 47 games, hitting .299/.413/.458, including three homers, 36 RBIs, and a 131 wRC+. Most impressively, Durbin hosts a 9.8% strikeout rate and a 14% rate. He has elite plate discipline, and the Yankees may see a bit of Jose Altuve in his game.

At this rate, Durbin should have a fantastic opportunity to win the second base and cut about $15 million from the team’s payroll. They would have him under contract for six years in arbitration, meaning they would have two youngsters, with Anthony Volpe manning shortstop and protecting the middle infield.

That’s not to mention Ben Rice and his prospects at first base, who could replace Rizzo. Rice, 25, is hitting .242/.371/.490, including 11 homers and 23 RBIs over 42 Double-A games.

Rice is having a great season and is coming off an elite campaign in 2023, winning the Yankees’ MiLB Developmental Hitter Award.

The Yankees have tremendous talent waiting in the wings, but with Torres and Rizzo still under contract, they have no reason to make any premature decisions. 2025 will open up the floodgate replacements, but it is evident they have more than enough to fill in the gaps at an extremely cheap price point.

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