Gleyber Torres has not even seen a pitch in major league baseball, yet he is already an MVP and batting title champion.
At 19-years-old, the Yankees prospect is the youngest player in Arizona Fall League history to take home the Joe Black MVP award and batting title.
The highly touted prospect is the second Yankee to win the award in the past three years. Greg Bird took home the hardware after the 2014 fall season.
Torres did not disappoint in his first action as a member of the Yankees organization. This fall, the infielder hit a league-high .403, 50 points better than the second-best average in the league. Torres led the league in on-base percentage (.513) and OPS (1.158). The preparation he is displaying continues to pay dividends.
“Before I came here, I prepared myself very well,” said Torres, who spent the 2016 season in Class A. “I always prepare.”
With preparation and results coming together, GM Brian Cashman has elected to start Torres in Double-A in the 2017 season.
Once February 18th rolls around, Torres will join the Yankees in Tampa for his first Spring Training as a member of the Yankees. The newly named Yankees top prospect by Baseball America will then head to the minors and tune up his skills to make a run to the majors.
The soon-to-be 20-year-old is the key piece in the Aroldis Chapman deal from the Chicago Cubs at the trade deadline.
“When we got Torres and played around with the idea (of moving Jorge Mateo), we moved him to second base, and just because of flexibility purposes and because of his athleticism, right away the feedback was that’s going to be no problem,” Cashman said. “We got the same feedback on Mateo in center (field), and in the instructional league, it was very easy for him. So, if that’s a direction that we choose to go, it’s something he’ll be very good at.”
Since Torres has the ability to play multiple positions, it will be interesting to see how the Yankees decide to pair him and Mateo. Torres has already made history, and all eyes will be on him once the season starts.