Yankees GM Talks Gleyber Torres and CBA Ramifications


Yankees general manager Brian Cashman candidly spoke about the ill-effects the current CBA has had on his organization, while also beaming about soon to be 20-year-old prospect Gleyber Torres.

Since the beginning of August when Cashman began to remake this Yankees club in his own image, he has been much more forthwith with his own personal feelings. On Thursday afternoon at Yankees scout Caesar Presbott’s Thanksgiving turkey giveaway, he continued this newfound vigor and direct answer approach.

When asked about the crown jewel of the Aug. 1 non-waiver trade deadline, Torres, and his MVP performance in the Arizona Fall League, Cashman replied:

“I didn’t set any [expectations]. I’m just proud of what he [Torres] accomplished. He had a tremendous fall league, being the MVP and best player in that league. When I was out there for the GM meetings, I went to see him play and the buzz among all the baseball people, the scouts and front office execs alike was ‘this is the best player in the league.’ And he was the youngest player in the league, so that’s pretty exciting to hear.

“I just wanted him to go out and grow and learn and get better.”

Cashman didn’t take all the credit, though, when it came to the timely acquisition of Torres — he claimed to thoroughly listen to his scouting department about just how good the Cubs’ No. 1 prospect (at the time) really was.

“That was the first time I’d seen him live. Seen a ton of video,” Cashman said. “His bat is his calling card. Defensively he could play probably all three positions: second, third and short. He’s not played third, but he can play second and short. What really differentiates him from others is the hittability.’’

Is Cashman perhaps giving us a hint as to where we should expect Torres to play when he reaches the Major League level? After all, Didi Gregorius is coming off his most accomplished offensive season of his still young career.

Cashman went on to say Torres will open the 2017 season at Double-A Trenton, and that depending on how well he reacts to playing against a higher echelon of players, will ultimately be the deciding factor of when he reaches the Bronx.

“He’s never played above the Florida State [Single-A],” Cashman said. “Next year he’ll start at Trenton and get introduced to the cold weather of the Eastern League in April for the first time. He’ll be ready whenever he’s ready. I’m not currently thinking about his timeline. Once he has extensive success at Double-A level, you can start doing that. He hasn’t taken that step yet.”

In regards to the CBA, Cashman was blunt and abrupt about his feelings, detailing a CBA that has hindered the Yankees over the past few offseasons.

“The previous CBAs have really hindered us, so I think the next one is something we’re clearly going to be interested in on how it will impact us over the entire course of the term of the contract. The previous ones have impacted us in a bad way.

“In the short term, I don’t think it will affect how we do business in 2017. The last few have impacted us exactly as they were expected to and why it was done the way it was. Lots of teams benefitted significantly, and everyone is always trying to find common ground between small markets and big markets.”

Next: Torres Named to All-AFL Team

The current CBA is set to expire on Dec. 1, though the owners and the Players Association may agree to an extension of the current rules as the two sides continue to negotiate terms of the next deal — including an international draft and competitive tax balance issues. If not, there is a real likelihood that MLB could find itself embroiled in the first work stoppage since 1994-95 — which lasted 232 days, and a total of 920 games.