Gleyber Torres is the second baseman the Yankees have missed since Robinson Cano
In 2005, the Yankees brought up a young infielder with a swing as sweet as a honey suckle. Robinson Cano was embraced by the Yankees fan base for his powerful home runs and cheerful smile. Though occasionally the media would get on him for a lack of hustle, it was Robbie’s great athletic ability that just made everything seem so effortless. Cano represented the Bronx Bombers as an all-star five times from 2005-2013, and he even won the 2011 home run derby down in Arizona. With the Yankees star captain Derek Jeter heading into the final years of his career, the stage was set for Cano to take over as the face of the franchise.
Cano’s contract was set to expire after the 2013 season, but there was little doubt around the game where he would end up. The Yankees would never allow their homegrown star to get away. That offseason the Yankees went out and signed catcher Brian McCann to fill the catching void that in recent years had been occupied by Chris Stewart, Russell Martin and Francisco Cervelli. Now all the team had to do was bring back Cano and gear up for the playoffs after missing them in 2013 (mostly due to injuries). In early December, the Yanks signed outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury to a seven year $153 million-dollar deal. This sent shockwaves through the game because that was the money the team had allocated for Cano. Had something gone wrong in negotiations?
Cano and his representatives had been adamant about receiving a nine or ten-year contract. The Yankees led by GM Brian Cashman had firmly drawn their line in the sand at a seven-year deal worth right around $175 million. The Yankees truly thought even if another team offered more that Cano wouldn’t leave the only team he had ever known. Cano turned the Yankees offer down and signed a ten year $240 million-dollar deal with the Seattle Mariners. Fans were angry that Cano would leave and for a team that hasn’t been competitive since 2001. They started to realize that being a Yankee Great like Jeter, DiMaggio and Gehrig wasn’t important to Cano as they had thought. Most understood that the contract was too much and the Yankees had been smart to stand their ground, but Cano still hears the boos rein down every time he returns to the Bronx.
In the years that followed Cano’s betrayal the team used Brian Roberts, Stephen Drew and Starlin Castro among others to fill the void left by their once homegrown superstar. The Yankees finally seem to have found the answer with their rookie phenom Gleyber Torres. Torres was drafted by the Cubs, but sent to New York in July 2016 as the headliner in the Aroldis Chapman trade. Torres picked up his first career home run last night while the man he was traded for (Chapman) picked up the win. Torres projects to be a perennial all-star and has already shown flashes in his brief time with the organization. Including, but not limited to, his clutch game tying single down in Houston Thursday afternoon. A hit so clutch that it made the infamous “Astros Rants” Twitter account cry...over a May 3rd baseball game.
With Torres now in the fold the Yankees no longer have to worry about their middle infield. Didi Gregorius is firmly entrenched at shortstop and now Torres will act as his double play partner for the foreseeable future. Gleyber has been up with the big club about two weeks and the comparisons to Cano are very easy to make. One thing is certain though, Torres is exactly what the Yankees need while the Mariners are paying a 35-year-old $100 plus million for the next 6 years.
Article by Fave RuggieroFollow @BronxBomberBall