“Super excited,” Torres said through the help of a translator on his feeling when he got called up to Triple-A. “My family is excited too, happy for me. I feel like it’s a good opportunity for me early in the year.”
Torres batted .273 with five home runs and 21 RBI in his first 32 games at the Double-A level this season for the Trenton Thunder.
A tendinitis bicep injury suffered over a month ago halted Torres’ progression in Double-A momentarily, but he has been able to rebound from the injury and feels solid physically at this moment.
“Pretty good [physically], 100 percent,” Torres said. “My shoulder is pretty good, worked on it before the game with everything.”
Through only twelve games at Triple-A for Torres, he is batting .256 (10-39) with seven RBI. Despite not having the best start to his Triple-A stint, numbers that have been heightened by his 3-3, one home run game on Monday night, the talent is visibly there among his teammates and coaches.
“At this early stage, [Torres] has shown some maturity, patient at the plate,” Manager Al Pedrique confessed. “Definitely a kid with a lot of talent, we just need to give him more time in order to feel comfortable around Triple-A.”
Torres came in as a natural shortstop position player but through the minor league system he has been getting his reps at third and second base, predictably to find him a starting spot with the New York Yankees someday as the shortstop position will likely be occupied by 27-year old Didi Gregorious.
“Pretty good, worked before the game on confidence,” Torres said on transition to third and second base. “A lot of help through the coaches, use of hands at every position and every different opportunity.”
New York Yankees Manager Joe Girardi talked to reporters after Torres was called up to Triple-A last and stated “Things could happen quickly,” in regard of Torres potentially getting called up this season.
The Yankees have been more accustomed to giving big prospects opportunities as players like Gary Sanchez and Aaron Judge have made a name of themselves sooner rather than later in the big leagues in the past year.
“It all depends, this kid [Torres] is only 20 years old, and we’re going to make sure that if the phone rings and that’s about him, he’ll be ready,” Pedrique said. “That’s one thing I’ve liked about the Yankees organization, they don’t like to rush guys just to rush and get them to the big leagues. They want to make sure they are ready in all the aspects.”
Torres’ dream to play in the major leagues is closer than it has ever been, but he would rather focus on what is currently in front of him, and that is improving his game in Scranton for the RailRiders.
“I don’t think about it too much, I stay focused here,” Torres said. “Enjoy every opportunity with the team to enjoy every day. Play hard and stay focused is the key for me.”
Now at the highest minor league level and getting more comfortable with each passing day, though he is getting closer to becoming big league ready, defense will be an area Torres looks to improve on at all three positions.
“This game is very difficult, you got bad days, weaker days,” Torres said. “Reliving the process and play my game is key for me.”