Gleyber Torres secured the final out of the ALDS, then rocked the Guardians to sleep.
After Josh Naylor’s home run celebration from Game 4 against Gerrit Cole, in which the Guardians DH rounded the bases while rocking a baby, Torres caught the final out at second base in Game 5 on Tuesday and immediately mimicked Naylor, rocking his arms as the Yankees began to celebrate advancing to the ALCS.
“It’s a little revenge,” Torres said in the champagne-soaked Yankees clubhouse. “I feel like the first-timer people get excited and don’t respect the opponent. We showed what we can do after that. “
Torres said Naylor’s celebration – MLB.com previously reported that when Naylor homered off pitchers, he called them his “son” so he rocks the baby rounding the bases – got the Yankees going on Sunday.
“Of course,” Torres said. “He can do whatever he wants. … That is disrespectful, not just for Cole but all the team. We got a little revenge. We’re happy to beat those guys and now they can watch on TV the next series for us. “
Yankee Stadium joined in on taunting Naylor throughout Game 5 on Tuesday, booing him and loudly chanting “Who’s your daddy?” after each time he was retired.
All three of Torres’ biggest contributions Tuesday came without swinging the bat.
The Yankees’ leadoff man drew a pair of key walks that turned into runs and also added a stolen base to set up one of those runs in their 5-1 win.
Torres’ biggest feat may have been drawing a walk in the fifth inning against Guardians shutdown reliever Trevor Stephan. Entering the inning, the former Yankees prospect had thrown 5 ¹ / ₃ perfect innings in the postseason, recording 10 of his 16 outs on strikeouts – including 4 ¹ / ₃ innings and eight strikeouts in the ALDS.
But Stephan began his third inning of work in the fifth by facing Torres, who fell behind 0-2 and then worked a full count and laid off a splitter in the dirt to draw the walk.
Torres then got a big jump and stole second base – his second swipe of the series – with Aaron Judge at the plate. That set him up to score on Anthony Rizzo’s single to right-center field off new reliever James Karinchak to give the Yankees some extra breathing room at 5-1.
Earlier, Torres had led off the first inning by drawing a four-pitch walk against Guardians starter Aaron Civale. The right-hander threw three cutters and a sinker but Torres did not bite at any of them, setting the tone for what would be a short outing for Civale.
Torres later moved up to second base when Civale hit Anthony Rizzo and then scored when Giancarlo Stanton crushed a home run that put the Yankees up 3-0.
After batting out of the three-hole for the first two games of the ALDS (and going 2-for-8 with a run), Torres moved into the leadoff spot in Game 3 for a briefly scuffling Judge. Torres had hit leadoff just three times in the regular season but was back there on Tuesday for the third straight game.