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Thread: According to LEN3- It appears the Twins are near the end of their patience w/ Hicks

  1. #41
    Senior Member All-Star Winston Smith's Avatar
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    Management 101; don't berate employees in public!
    For some reason the Twins coaches and front office think this is a way of improving performance. I doubt you'd find many books on management (non-military) that would agree.
    This comment brought to you from the Rosedale Mall studio by Hamm's Beer, brewed in the land of sky blue waters.

  2. #42
    Senior Member All-Star
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    Quote Originally Posted by Winston Smith View Post
    Management 101; don't berate employees in public!
    For some reason the Twins coaches and front office think this is a way of improving performance. I doubt you'd find many books on management (non-military) that would agree.
    I'm not sure management did so much as it was LEN's opinion.

    But also, even if it was the Twins, most teams do this at some point. Earlier this season, the Nats manager called out freaking Bryce Harper. Torre publicly embarrassed ARoid. I'm not sure if Terry Collins comments on D'Arnaud are much different than the ones from Gardy on Hicks.

  3. #43
    Senior Member All-Star cmathewson's Avatar
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    I have been taking a short hiatus, but I have to comment on this one.

    First, I agree that this is a typical LEN III thing, using "unnamed" sources to make claims about a player. He is one of the worst at this. Who knows what was actually said or gestured about Hicks. It could be simple frustration that LEN III misinterpreted. He seems to be getting lazier. Yesterday, he was quoting Phil Miller--his colleague--in a blog post. So I take everything he writes with a huge grain of salt.

    Second, there is something to the way the Twins are managing Hicks that makes little sense. They promote him twice before he's ready, all the while removing any depth behind him both times. When he struggles, they don't talk about on-field performance but work ethic or getting-after-it-ness or busting-your-tail-icity or whatever. They set him up to fail and then they complain about him publicly when he fails. It is the worst sort of management. LEN II might be exaggerating now, but both Antony and Gardy have said things publicly twice this year to throw him under the bus while they took zero responsibility for their mismanagement.

    BTW, his injuries are all of the hustle variety. The current one is from making the game-ending diving catch on Saturday. For them to complain about that kind of injury in light of their other (purported) claims about his laziness is disingenuous.

    Third, I agree about not giving up on him. He needs to go down and have a half season of dominance. Then we'll see where he fits. Giving up on a former number 18 overall pick is just a waste. And he deserves better.

    Fourth, they aren't paying attention if they think he has continued to struggle in the kind of way Florimon struggled when he was up here. He's been doing OK (not great, not horrible) when given the opportunity for the last month. If you don't believe me, check out the OPS numbers: Last 7: 1.100, Last 14: .719, Last 28 .708.
    "If you'da been thinkin' you wouldn't 'a thought that.."

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  5. #44
    Senior Member Triple-A
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    All this speculation reminds of high school where the shy girl is called "stuck up" because she is reluctant to talk to people. LEN3's "reporting" is not something I would use as information to make any decision about Hick's character or future with the club. For all we know, he is talking to the lowest intern in the PR department for his information. There are plenty of laid back ballplayers that have a strong desire to be great. Let the kid go to Rochester and be in the lineup each day. He'll either get it and possibly be a part of the future or he won't. Not every prospect makes it.

  6. #45
    Senior Member All-Star Hosken Bombo Disco's Avatar
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    LENIII wrote: "They finally criticized him in the press for not preparing well. And he hasn't responded."

    Examples of Hicks "not responding" since then:

    - a walk off base hit immediately after the sit down with Gardy
    - robbed a home run
    - gave up switch hitting to be more effective
    - drew a huge 2 out BB that set up Dozier's big 9th inning hit against Yankees
    - and generally has improved his numbers (if only marginally) in limited play.

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  8. #46
    Senior Member Triple-A
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    cmathewson
    BTW, his injuries are all of the hustle variety.
    I know people love Hicks' diving catch last week, but here is how I see it:

    The Twins are in a terrible spot in center field.

    The Twins are leading by 8 runs (EIGHT BLEEPING RUNS!) with two outs in the ninth.

    Your best (only) centerfielder chooses to make a diving, WebGem catch.

    Your best (only) centerfielder sits out the next three games with a sore throwing shoulder.

    You might call that a hustle play, but I think it was as boneheaded as not coming to the park knowing who the opposing starting pitcher was.

    I don't need everyone to be as cerebral as Cal Ripken or Greg Maddox, but have a little awareness!

    While a little off-topic, I really enjoyed the recent Mientkewitz interview and how he felt he was actually better off for having had TK as a manager, even though he was 'walking on eggshells', because it helped him develop a thicker skin and be more prepared for the ups and downs of life in MLB (perhaps too paraphrased, but that is how I read between the lines).

  9. #47
    Senior Member All-Star cmathewson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TRex View Post
    cmathewson


    I know people love Hicks' diving catch last week, but here is how I see it:

    The Twins are in a terrible spot in center field.

    The Twins are leading by 8 runs (EIGHT BLEEPING RUNS!) with two outs in the ninth.

    Your best (only) centerfielder chooses to make a diving, WebGem catch.

    Your best (only) centerfielder sits out the next three games with a sore throwing shoulder.

    You might call that a hustle play, but I think it was as boneheaded as not coming to the park knowing who the opposing starting pitcher was.

    I don't need everyone to be as cerebral as Cal Ripken or Greg Maddox, but have a little awareness!

    While a little off-topic, I really enjoyed the recent Mientkewitz interview and how he felt he was actually better off for having had TK as a manager, even though he was 'walking on eggshells', because it helped him develop a thicker skin and be more prepared for the ups and downs of life in MLB (perhaps too paraphrased, but that is how I read between the lines).
    Fair enough. But when you are publicly criticized for failing to hustle or prepare or anything and you've been effectively benched for it, you hustle on every play. What I'm saying is, they can't complain about him not hustling and then complain about him hustling.
    "If you'da been thinkin' you wouldn't 'a thought that.."

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  11. #48
    Senior Member All-Star Shane Wahl's Avatar
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    Hicks has actually improved over the last month and now there is this irresponsibility from LEN 3!

    If this is going to be such a stupid, ridiculous issue for the Twins, then yes, send him down to Rochester until Santana starts to fall flat (he will, at least for awhile). How this organization has handled Hicks (and Parmelee in the past) is beyond my comprehension. And they were about to continue to do it to Pinto too, but luckily something had to give.

  12. #49
    Twins Moderator MVP Riverbrian's Avatar
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    Personally... I never place a lot of faith in sound bites or quotes. How a manager feels about a ballplayer could never be boiled down to a sentence.

    Repeating myself... I was shocked that Hicks made the team out of ST after his 2013. Not using LEN as proof of anything... But... If they had lack of engagement concerns... Aloof issues with Hicks... If you couple that with his actual 2013 statistical performance... It makes the Twins approach to CF beyond baffling. The Twins screwed up.

    I have no idea what Hicks is like... I can only judge by what I've seen. Here's what I've seen:

    1. I rarely see him hit a ball hard... Hits... Outs... The ball doesn't scream off his bat. The hits he gets are usually soft. Something ain't right... I don't know what it is but something ain't right.

    2. He has speed but I rarely see him use it. I don't watch him play and say... "Man... Is he fast". But I've heard that he is. I've seen him range on some flyballs and that's about it. Where are the stolen bases? Where are the extra bases? Where are the moments where Dick or Bert say "Hicks sure can run". He's been here long enough that we would have seen something with his feet by now.

    3. We've all heard about his 96MPH high school fastball. I've seen him make one throw that made me go wow!!! Last year Yankee stadium. From the CF wall to 3B on the fly... I know he has it but why doesn't he use it. If he has a rocket arm... Why haven't we seen it. He's just dumping the ball into the cut.

    In the short time that Santana has been in CF... I've seen him hit the ball hard... I've seen him use his feet with speed that you notice and what should be even more obvious to all watching... I've seen Santana actually try to throw runners out. Yes he has failed miserably a couple of times but I've seen him try. I don't think he has Hicks's arm but I've seen him try to nail runners more often then I've seen Hicks try in a much much shorter period of time in CF.

    Whatever problems the Twins have with Hicks... I dont know and I don't trust the quotes. But my guess is that you all see the problems.

    If he has an arm... Show me the gun! If he has speed... Show me an example of his wheels. There ain't many examples. I can find examples with Santana.

    For those who think that Hicks is our best OF... I respect your opinion but I honestly believe you mean he has the potential to be our best defensive outfielder and with that I agree completely.

    If Hicks is the best we have based on performance. We are in trouble... Because I really don't see it.
    Last edited by Riverbrian; 06-12-2014 at 01:39 PM.
    A Skeleton walks into a bar and says... "Give me a beer... And a mop".

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  14. #50
    Senior Member All-Star SpiritofVodkaDave's Avatar
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    Minnesota without a doubt has some of the worst (maybe not worst, but certainly lazy at times) beat writers around, other then Russo and Sinker (who isn't a beat writer but is great) I don't see a lot worth reading on a somewhat regular basis.

    The 4 guys here and Gleeman could write circles around these jokers. The timing of this article by Neal III seems suspect at the very least.
    "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take"- L. Harvey Oswald


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  16. #51
    Twins News Team All-Star TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    I don't get why this has turned into a beat writer witchhunt/conspiracy. Sorry to break it to folks but the beat writers don't have to drum up or concoct anything to make this story.

    The behavior of Hicks and the team are doing the work for them.

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  18. #52
    Senior Member All-Star cmathewson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpiritofVodkaDave View Post
    Minnesota without a doubt has some of the worst (maybe not worst, but certainly lazy at times) beat writers around, other then Russo and Sinker (who isn't a beat writer but is great) I don't see a lot worth reading on a somewhat regular basis.

    The 4 guys here and Gleeman could write circles around these jokers. The timing of this article by Neal III seems suspect at the very least.
    Berardino is the best we've had in a long time. I like Miller. I really liked Christensen until he moved to the Gopher's beat. I remeber LEN III used to complain about Christensen "eating his lunch". To my mind, he didn't do anything all that special. He just worked hard and is a great writer.
    "If you'da been thinkin' you wouldn't 'a thought that.."

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  20. #53
    Twins Moderator MVP USAFChief's Avatar
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    I don't understand how these issues, if true, were unknown to the Twins when they traded two CFers and gave him the job last spring. I also don't understand the Twins penchant for using the media to question character.
    Last edited by USAFChief; 06-12-2014 at 02:08 PM.
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  22. #54
    Twins Moderator MVP Riverbrian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by USAFChief View Post
    I don't understand how these issues, if true, were unknown to the Twins when they traded two CFers and gave him the job last spring.
    I agree with this... How Indeed?

    Not only last spring... But THIS SPRING!!! I can't grasp the CF thinking this year and I'm really trying to grasp it.
    A Skeleton walks into a bar and says... "Give me a beer... And a mop".

  23. #55
    Senior Member All-Star Shane Wahl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by USAFChief View Post
    I don't understand how these issues, if true, were unknown to the Twins when they traded two CFers and gave him the job last spring. I also don't understand the Twins penchant for using the media to question character.
    Precisely. What is actually going on in this organization if this kind of thing can actually happen. Either they are making stuff up/exaggerating, or they bumped the guy after one good year at AA knowing that he had the issues that they are now complaining about.

    Aside from that, he has been getting better through the year. He just isn't playing now.

  24. #56
    Twins News Team All-Star TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by USAFChief View Post
    I don't understand how these issues, if true, were unknown to the Twins when they traded two CFers and gave him the job last spring. I also don't understand the Twins penchant for using the media to question character.
    One caveat: "question young player's character" - it's rarely a veteran.

  25. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by curt1965 View Post
    I know there's problems with Hicks, but can someone explain why he is in the Twins'
    doghouse? I know he didn't prepare at all, but what are some of the other issues?
    He hasn't shown he can hit. He's awful as a hitter. He can't hit. He walks, some, yes. Can't hit. No spark. No charge. No enthusiasm. No drive. No gotta ram that ball back up the middle. No, no, no.

  26. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by USAFChief View Post
    I don't understand how these issues, if true, were unknown to the Twins when they traded two CFers and gave him the job last spring. I also don't understand the Twins penchant for using the media to question character.
    This. Which makes me think that most of this is inaccurate and what is going on is no different than the growing pains that most young players experience. I also think people are exaggerating the number of times the Twins have directly and publicly criticized or questioned a players character through the media. Gardy makes some comments in the heat of a loss but I've never heard Ryan do it and Antony once. This whole go around is based on LEN3 and nothing he has written has a direct, credible source attributed to it.

  27. #59
    Quote Originally Posted by ScottyB View Post
    Hunter was very similar to Hicks. Even after a full season in the bigs, he needed to be sent back to AAA before he figured it out at age 26. Hicks is only 24 and has yet to play a full season in Rochester. He was rushed up because of the 2 trades before he was ready. I hope the Twins don't give up on him. I think he has the potential to be a late bloomer like Hunter and Gomez and if they toss him out, he'll bloom somewhere else. (Gomez was also 26 before he got it - his 3rd season with Milwaukee).
    Thank you, sir. This needs to be mentioned.

    Also, when Hicks does ultimately arrive in Rochester for the foreseeable future, it needs to be expressed to him that he needs to remold himself into someone that has a bat worthy of being a corner major league OF, and his competition for taking hold of an opportunity like that is with players like Arcia, Plouffe and Rosario.

    What does this mean? Well, maybe Hicks should modify his approach at the plate to, gee, I dunno, maybe swing more than once in a blue moon? I appreciate patience at the plate, and no one wants him to be the 2nd coming of Jacque Jones. But, in order to have a SLG that exceeds an OBP--something pretty much imperative from a major league OF--you need to swing the bat and drive the ball.

    What's funny is that he has the strength and bat speed to hit the crap out of it.

    Ironically, I wish he would take an aggressive approach much more in line with Carlos Gomez or Torii Hunter. I think that alone would make a quality MLB starter, or at worst case, I super valuable trading chip to give him an opportunity to excel elsewhere and get an Alex Meyer/Trevor May or better in return.

  28. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmathewson View Post
    Fair enough. But when you are publicly criticized for failing to hustle or prepare or anything and you've been effectively benched for it, you hustle on every play. What I'm saying is, they can't complain about him not hustling and then complain about him hustling.
    If your kid is sitting around the house like a couch potato, and you tell him (or her) to go outside and play and they promptly 'hustle' out into the street chasing a ball, are you going to complain (or at least try to get him to learn his lesson)?
    Last edited by TRex; 06-12-2014 at 03:32 PM. Reason: incomplete analogy

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