Gleyber Every Day

The last time the Yankees had a 23 year old shortstop was 1997–Derek Jeter. During that year, he was the reigning AL Rookie of the Year and ended up hitting .291/.370/.405/.775. In 2020, another exciting 23 year old will be manning shortstop for the Yankees: Gleyber Torres.

With the departure of Didi Gregorius to Philadelphia, the mantle of everyday shortstop falls to Torres, barring something unforeseen. In the last two seasons, Torres has more than proven himself, but that was mostly as a second baseman. Now, he’ll shift back to his natural position of shortstop and, presumably, a new role as a leader.

Cliche or old school as it may sound, shortstop is a position of leadership on a baseball field. Off the field, the last two Yankee shortstops have also been leaders to one degree or another. Jeter was the team’s captain and Didi was, pardon the pun, a gregarious presence in the locker room and away from the stadium as well. With CC Sabathia retiring, the returning Brett Gardner will likely be the ‘main’ team leader and Aaron Judge, in a Jeterian way, is also front and center. As a shortstop, though, and a budding superstar, it wouldn’t be imprudent to assume some leadership should be coming from Torres as well.

Torres has consistently shown a readiness and willingness to be available and accountable publicly, so it’s not a stretch to assume he does the same privately with teammates. There are practically no doubts about Torres’ play and the value it adds. And there shouldn’t be many, if any, about his ability to shift into a leadership role, even at such a young age. The Age of Gregorius is over; now, it’s going to be Gleyber Day, every day. I can’t wait to celebrate.

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2 Comments

  1. Robert

    He’s only 23 let him enjoy playing the game he loves, everything else will fall into place

  2. Far from disparaging his constantly improving English and willingness to talk to the press, I’m quite impressed with it, but I don’t really see him as being much better than Jeter when dealing with the press… He really doesn’t portray much more information than Jeter did because he uses standard player-press talking points (rather than Jeteresque non-statements.)

    I think Judge is breaking out of the Jeter-type mold that he used so often in his first couple seasons, he’s giving voice to his fire more often, even at the plate where he was consistently and curiously silent in the face of terrible umpiring.

    CC was out there in podcasts and in the community doing press during charity events, etc… Didi had his artwork and epic social media game. Someone else might need to take on those roles, or maybe the organization needs to orchestrate more public access to the team, like they did in the ’16-’17 offseason… Opening batting practice every home game might be helpful too.

    In the clubhouse, I expect the leadership development to happen organically… The tendency of internal recognition of leadership is ingrained in the Yankees clubhouse culture. There aren’t enough new faces to really change that, and Cole is, by all accounts, the type of guy anyone would want in their organization.

    I’m not worried about it, I’m just not sure Torres is ready nor capable to take on that kind of role yet.

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