Yankees bench 2 starting infielders from lineup

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Yankees manager Aaron Boone benched starting second baseman Gleyber Torres in the final game of a two-game set against the New York Mets on Wednesday. Visibly upset on the bench, Torres’s recent lack of hustle and production has led to significant consequences.

Gleyber Torres Faces a Downward Trend

Coming off a tremendous 2023 season, Torres is heading in the wrong direction in a contract year, batting .215/.294/.333. Despite hitting 25 homers last year, he has managed only seven this season along with 29 RBIs, a 23.9% strikeout rate, and an 83 wRC+. He’s considered 17% worse than the average MLB hitter, compounded by extremely inconsistent defense.

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Torres is on pace for over 20 errors this season with a career-low .960 fielding percentage, -4 defensive runs saved, and -1 outs above average, indicating a significant decline in his performance compared to previous years.

The Yankees Are Making Numerous Changes

However, the Yankees weren’t done there. DJ LeMahieu was also benched on Thursday in favor of Jahmai Jones and Oswaldo Cabrera.

LeMahieu is having a tough season as well, despite a limited number of games due to a right foot injury. In 23 games, he’s hitting just .178/.274/.178, with zero home runs and six RBIs. He now holds the unfortunate distinction of being the only player with over 80 plate appearances this season without an extra-base hit. Moreover, he has a 60.3% groundball rate, the highest since his rookie season back in 2011 when he played just 37 games for Chicago.

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Shaking Up the Infield

In his place, Oswaldo Cabrera, who is also struggling offensively with a batting average of .238 and an OBP of .281, will fill in.

Jones will also serve in the infield on Thursday against the Toronto Blue Jays. This season, Jones has a 109 wRC+ but is only hitting .182 with a .308 OBP, one homer, and one RBI. Clearly, Boone is attempting to shake things up and give some of their veterans a day of rest prior to a tough stretch of games leading up to the All-Star break in July.

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