Yankees' Gleyber Torres homers to right-center off Eduardo Rodriguez on the...

Yankees' Gleyber Torres homers to right-center off Eduardo Rodriguez on the first pitch of Monday's game. Credit: AP/John Raoux

LAKELAND, Fla. — Gleyber Torres continued his torrid spring training Monday, hitting  a home run to right-center off lefthander Eduardo Rodriguez on the first pitch of the game as the Yankees beat the Tigers, 11-7, at Joker Marchant Stadium.

After going 1-for-3 with his second Grapefruit League home run, Torres is 8-for-19 (.421) as he tries to rebound from a disappointing 2021 in which he posted a career-low .697 OPS.

“Overall, I feel really good and confident in myself,” he said.  

Manager Aaron Boone said he’s noticed that Torres is using his lower half much more than he has in recent years. Torres agreed, saying he’s gone back to what worked for him in the past.

“I tried to change my mechanics a little bit,” he said. “For sure, I lost power and I used too much of my upper body. Doing this for long as a player, you think too much, and I tried to fix everything in one day. Mentality-wise, it’s try to be a little more consistent, my work, my routine, and be focused with the hitting coach. Every conversation, I ask how he sees me. He tries to be on top of that situation and just be more focused in those little things because I know it helped me a lot.”

Torres, who will be the primary second baseman but also is preparing to start some games at shortstop, found himself in an unfamiliar spot in the first inning: deep rightfield. Boone used a four-man outfield against lefthanded-swinging Tigers rightfielder Robbie Grossman.

Torres, who said he last played the outfield as a Little League centerfielder, watched from right as Grossman hit a fly ball to Miguel Andujar in left.

“Now is the moment to practice, to be more confident in those situations,” Torres said. “Next time, I hope I get a few fly balls.”

Torres said he and shortstop Isiah Kiner-Falefa took fly balls in practice on Sunday to prepare for Monday’s odd deployment. Boone, who has never used a four-man outfield during the season, said this could be the year.

That’s away baseball, Suzyn

John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman called the game for WFAN. It was their first spring training road game in person since the pandemic hit. 

“Do you know how hard it is to call a game off a monitor?” Sterling asked Boone on the field before the game and before signing autographs.

Sterling and Waldman will be immortalized by the Yankees when they are featured together in a “Talking Bobblehead” giveaway on Aug. 19.

Extra bases

Aroldis Chapman fired his first pitch over the head of catcher Max McDowell and to the backstop but recovered to throw a 1-2-3 fourth inning with one strikeout in his second outing . . . Non-roster DH Ronald Guzman went 3-for-4 with five RBIs . . . Lefthanded reliever Joely Rodriguez threw live batting practice and appears to be over the sore neck that had been plaguing him, Boone said.

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