Yankees catcher Austin Wells throws out Houston Astros' Jeremy Pena...

Yankees catcher Austin Wells throws out Houston Astros' Jeremy Pena on a bunt during the fourth inning of a baseball game Saturday, Sept. 2, 2023, in Houston. Credit: AP/Kevin M. Cox

HOUSTON — Austin Wells arrived  in the major leagues with the reputation as a hit-first catcher.

The Yankees haven't run from that. In his own way, neither has the 24-year-old catching prospect, who was promoted to the big leagues along with Jasson Dominguez on Friday.

To this point — and even Aaron Boone was quick to mention that it has been only two games — Wells has held his own behind the plate. He was in the lineup a third straight game Sunday.

“So far, so good,” Boone said before the series finale against the Astros. “I think one thing he has, he’s got a presence to him, he’s got a thirst for it. I think he takes a lot of pride in not only preparing as a hitter but preparing as a catcher. He seems to have that passion, that baseball thing you need to have as a catcher.”

Boone said Wells, whose first big-league spring training was cut short when he suffered a rib fracture, still managed to start building a relationship with some of the veteran pitchers, a key for any new catcher, let alone a rookie.

Wells caught one of those veterans, Carlos Rodon, on Friday in his big-league debut and received positive reviews.

“I think Wells had a great game back there,” Rodon said after earning the win in Friday’s 6-2 victory. “We were pretty close to the same page and worked pretty well [together]. I thought he was pretty locked in. He seemed pretty dialed in, not really nervous at all.”

Wells is 2-for-10 with two RBIs in his first three major-league games. He had an RBI double and scored a run in the Yankees' 6-1 win over the Astros on Sunday night.

Gleyber’s back

Gleyber Torres, scratched just before Friday night’s game when his back locked up during batting practice and held out of Saturday game as a result, returned to the lineup Sunday night and hit a 435-foot home run.

“Was pretty good by the end of last night,” Boone said Sunday. “Felt like he was probably going to be in play [Sunday]. Just wanted [him] to wake up this morning and see how he felt this morning. Felt good, came in, took some swings and moved around just to make sure. He was good to go.”

Torres is hitting .272 with 24 homers — second-most on the club — and an .805 OPS in 134 games. Torres, a possible trade chip this offseason as he will be going into his final year before free agency, has been the Yankees’ most consistent hitter this season not named Aaron Judge.

“What’s stood out to me is, obviously, he’s had a lot of success for a young man at this point of his career,” Boone said. “I feel this has been his most consistent season from start to finish.”

Hamilton to the IL

Ian Hamilton was placed on the injured list Sunday with a right groin strain. Boone said the reliever, who has a 2.24 ERA in 35 games, felt the injury while warming up in the bullpen during Saturday night’s victory. A right groin strain caused Hamilton, who will undergo testing Monday in New York, to miss 35 games earlier in the season.

“Probably not as bad as last time,” Boone said. “Hopefully something that he’ll be able to come back from this year, but definitely going to cost him enough time to put him on the IL.”

Bay Shore’s Greg Weissert was recalled from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre to take Hamilton’s spot.

Hero's welcome

After hitting a pair of two-run homers in his first three major-league games,   Dominguez figures to  get a very warm reception when he makes his Yankee Stadium debut on Tuesday.

Dominguez on what that debut  might be like: “I think it’s going to be big-time. I think it’s going to be awesome. A lot of family’s going to be at the game too, so it will be awesome.”

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