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Gleyber Torres Bats Fifth; Yanks Lose 5-1 To Astros

Verlander Dominates

May 28, 2018 - 4:51 pm
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By WFAN.com

Yankees fans have grown accustomed to seeing Gleyber Torres bat ninth this season – 25 out of 30 games – but on Monday the 21-year-old rookie hit fifth, eliciting a lot of pre-game interest and speculation.

Boone defended the change in batting order, explaining that with Giancarlo Stanton getting a day off, Torres simply offered a right-handed bat in between lefties Greg Bird and Aaron Hicks. Nothing more than that.

But any news pertaining to Torres is magnified, as the second baseman seemingly does something every game to showcase his unlimited potential.

The decision to bat Torres fifth Monday also came just two days after Boone made another highly talked about decision, which was sending down Ronald Torreyes – opting to keep Tyler Austin – to make room for Greg Bird.

Validating Boone’s choice to bat him fifth, Torres in his first at-bat lined a single up the middle off Houston Astros flamethrower Justin Verlander. However, that good piece of hitting was later negated when Verlander picked off Torres, who was caught straying too far off second base.

In his next plate appearance, Torres led off the bottom of the fifth with a harmless fly ball to right center.

In his third at-bat – following a seventh inning Greg Bird solo home run off Verlander – Torres ran the count full, but then swung so hard through a third-strike fastball that he fell to one knee.  

Didi Gregorious ran Verlander from the game when he singled off him in the bottom of the seventh, so Torres faced Ken Giles in his fourth and final at-bat of the game. Giles blew Torres away with a high fastball after he got ahead of him with some breaking balls in the dirt.

Torres also had an interesting day in the field, including an uncharacteristic throwing error in the fourth inning that pulled Bird off the bag, along with two sparkling catches in shallow center field in the fifth and sixth inning.

Going 1-for-4 in his first time hitting in the fifth spot isn’t a ringing endorsement for Torres, but it shouldn’t dictate future lineup-related decisions by Boone, who said before the game, “I don't worry about Gleyber in that regard.”