NEW YORK -- The Yankees continue to be amused by outsiders who marvel at Gleyber Torres' development into one of the American League's best middle infielders. Within their walls, his success comes as no surprise, and they have loved watching the 22-year-old continue to deliver big performances on the game's
NEW YORK -- The Yankees continue to be amused by outsiders who marvel at Gleyber Torres' development into one of the American League's best middle infielders. Within their walls, his success comes as no surprise, and they have loved watching the 22-year-old continue to deliver big performances on the game's grandest stage.
With a pair of big swings, Torres placed his name alongside elite company, joining Joe DiMaggio (1937) as the only Yankees to record five multi-homer games in one season prior to their 23rd birthday. Mike Tauchman delivered a tiebreaking hit as the Yankees completed a doubleheader sweep of the Red Sox, posting a 6-4 victory in the nightcap on Saturday at Yankee Stadium.
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"I just try to help my team," Torres said. "In the first game, I got opportunities but I felt too excited. I think I tried to do too much. In the second game, I just tried to relax and control what I can do."
After going hitless in five at-bats during Saturday's afternoon contest, a 9-2 Yankees victory, Torres slugged a solo shot off Brian Johnson in the third inning and added another blast facing Marcus Walden in the fifth.
The multi-homer game was the seventh of Torres' career and his first this year that did not come against the Orioles. Owning 23 homers in 2019, Torres tied the Padres' Hunter Renfroe and the Indians' Franmil Reyes for the most multi-homer games in the Majors this year.
"The power to all fields is the biggest thing," Aaron Judge said of Torres. "He's consistently staying through the baseball. If he's a little out front, he'll hit it to left, or if he's on it, he'll hit it to center. If he's a little late, he'll hit it to right. You never know when he's going to hit it out of the park. That's how impressive he is."
Cameron Maybin also contributed a two-run double as part of a three-run third inning. Tauchman gave the Bombers the lead in the seventh, capitalizing on a bases-loaded opportunity by smashing a two-run single through the left side of the infield off Matt Barnes.
"I wanted to, first and foremost, control my heart rate," Tauchman said. "The crowd was amazing tonight, so I knew the adrenaline of the moment would provide that extra. It seemed like that inning he was having a hard time locating his fastball in the strike zone, so I wanted to make sure that if I got a breaking ball out over the plate, I could hit it."
Though the Yankees increased their advantage in the AL East to 13 1/2 games over the Red Sox, sitting eight games ahead of the second-place Rays, the twin-bill sweep came at a price. Edwin Encarnacion sustained a right wrist fracture in Game 1, and Aaron Hicks injured his right elbow making a throw to third base in Game 2, with an MRI set for Sunday.
"I think the greatest strength of this team is the ability to overcome adversity and keep pushing forward," Tauchman said. "Obviously those are All-Star-caliber, middle-of-the-order players for us. I don't think it's a stretch to say that any sort of missed time from them is not great, but the thing about our team is that we just keep moving forward."
New York improved to 10-0 when utilizing an opener, with nine of those games having been started by Chad Green, who worked a scoreless first inning. Nestor Cortes Jr. permitted a two-run Rafael Devers homer and Chance Adams allowed a two-run single to Mookie Betts as they navigated the bulk innings.
The back end of the bullpen locked it down from there, with Adam Ottavino handing off to Tommy Kahnle, who yielded the mound to Zack Britton in the eighth. Boston loaded the bases with two outs against Britton, who pinned them that way by striking out Rafael Devers on a nasty slider.
Aroldis Chapman pitched around a walk in the ninth, striking out two as he logged his 29th save in 34 chances.
"This is a good group of guys," Judge said. "We’ve got a lot of All-Stars around here. It's a fun group to play with. We're great in this clubhouse together, and that's another thing -- we've got each other's back."
Bryan Hoch has covered the Yankees for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and Facebook.