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Duran Puts Together Strong Bounceback Year



David Adams managed Ezequiel Duran this past summer at Staten Island, which is not far from Yankee Stadium but years away from the big leagues.

And with 22-year-old Gleyber Torres in the beginning of what many believe will be a long run at second base for the Yankees, the position could be locked tight for quite a while.

Yet, Adams believes if Duran continues to show the skills he displayed this past summer in the short-season New York-Penn League he will thrive in the big leagues someday.

“He has the ability to play multiple positions but I can see him as an everyday second baseman in the big leagues,’’ Adams said of the 20-year-old Duran, who signed for $10,000 out of the Dominican Republic in 2017.

After hitting .201/.250/.312 for Rookie-level Pulaski in 2018, Duran improved to .256/.329/.495 for Staten Island in 2019.

Duran will likely open the 2020 season at low Class A Charleston, which is five levels from the big leagues, but Adams, a former second base prospect in the Yankees’ system, isn’t the only one who thinks Duran could make the big leagues.

“He has a chance to be a big leaguer,’’ a scout who followed the Yankees’ system said of the 5-foot-11, 185-pound Duran. “I like him. He is a strong kid who physically reminds me of Gleyber Torres, short and stocky type. He has a lot of raw power and bat speed.’’

If Duran plays for the Yankees or reaches the big leagues with another team as part of a trade it will be a terrific sign by the Yankees.

“He has great work ethic and leadership qualities,’’ Adams said. “It’s just a matter of game reps and making adjustments. Defensively, he is young and room for improvement. He shows up early and asks for more work. He is never satisfied.’’

Francisco Alvarez Tomdipace

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