HOUSTON — The biggest at-bat of Thursday’s game was by the Yankees’ youngest player.
And Gleyber Torres didn’t flinch, which wasn’t a surprise.
The 21-year-old rookie hasn’t flinched yet since making his big-league debut April 22.
After taking a called strike from Brad Peacock with the bases loaded and none out in the ninth, Torres lined a slider to left for a two-run single that tied the score at 5. It also sent Aaron Hicks to third, and he scored what proved to be the winning run when the Astros were unable to turn Aaron Judge’s bouncer into an inning-ending double play.
“It’s what I expect,” Aaron Boone said. “Poise, he’s got that in spades. He’s beyond his years. He plays with a confidence and maturity, so I feel great about him in that spot.”
Torres went 1-for-3 with three RBIs on Thursday, giving him a .317/.356/.390 slash line in 12 games.
Torres said he “enjoys” the pressure of that kind of situation. He added with a smile: “If I do my job, I enjoy it more.”
Torres also has played terrific defense, with one opposing team talent evaluator saying the ease with which he patrols second “reminds me of [Robinson] Cano.”
CC Sabathia has seen his share of young players come and go over the years. “No matter what, no matter how young he is, no matter how old he is, he’s comfortable in his at-bats, he’s comfortable in the field, comfortable in the clubhouse,” he said. “That’s a good sign.”
Boone said Greg Bird, who underwent surgery on his right ankle March 27, is expected to play in extended spring games starting Monday. Bird remains on pace to return in the six-to-eight-week range given at the time of the surgery.
Eye on London
The Associated Press reported that MLB “intends” to officially announce that the Yankees and Red Sox will play a two-game series at London’s Olympic Stadium on June 29-30, 2019. Several outlets, including Newsday, citing various sources, reported March 20 that an agreement was close.