12-28-2013, 11:06 PM #1
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Article: Top '13 Stories: #8 - Aaron Hicks' lost year
You can view the page at http://twinsdaily.com/content.php/25...icks-lost-year
12-29-2013, 12:19 AM #2
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Pressley can handle it until Buxton. Hicks becomes expendable and ten to one he hits the cover off the ball in Grapefruit this Spring. Or maybe he can cover the backup role playing every day in AAA. Fuggit...Buxton plays his way on team. Team plays over >500 ball and our starting pitching is vastly improved. Mauer is in the batting race and hits 22 home runs. Willingham show up all pumped and hits close to 30...plays uninspired LF. Gets traded for something decent. Maybe this is Hicks return. Twins never pick in the top 10 again.
12-29-2013, 08:29 AM #3
Not sure that it was a lost year per se. Trying year definitely, but hopefully not lost if lessons were learned by both Hicks and the Organization. Few random numbers that make me hopeful:
91: OPS+ as a RHB
.146: isoP as a LHB & RHB (that's up there at Doumit/Willingham levels)
.241: BABIP (for the type of player he is should be 100 points higher; was .315 in AAA in 2013 and in the mid 300s all his career)
.231/.362/.641 (even with .174 BABIP) : his numbers against the 12 LHSP he faced in the majors.
I am sure that there are lessons to learn here and (aside from the beaten to death switch hitting situation) from what I see, the biggest issue he faced all season was to make successful adjustments at the plate and change his approach depending on the pitcher. And I think that this is experience. He never met this quality (and variety) of pitching in the minors and he will not if he spends 2014 there. So for him to figure it out, he should be playing CF most of the days and Presley can rest him against tough righties.
One good sign: He did not take frustration from his PAs to the field with him.
One bad sign: Seems to care too much about golf and not baseball during the off-season. If I were him, I'd be spending time in cages with coaches and not on greens...
12-29-2013, 03:25 PM #4
The bigger issue was that Hicks tore the cover off the ball in Spring Training. And the alternatives failed just as miserably. It was anyone's job to win or take away. Joe Benson went down to the minors and totally stunk, getting a waiver claim from the Rangers who have since removed him from heir 40-man. Mastro had the chance to steal the job from Hicks, but turned up lame not just once, but twice. Ramirez was limited to less than 100 at bats. Hicks was in center because there was no one else to play, and the Twins didn't really want to add any of the OTHER vets to the 40-man.
Yes, they waited too long to move him down in the order. They probably should've found a replacement and sent him down earlier to Rochester, then promoting him at season's end.
He didn't get the September call-up. He didn't play winter ball. He may still have more to learn at AAA Rochester.
It was a rude awakening that backfired for the Twins, and especially for Hicks, who didn't get enough service time in the end.
Is he still the centerfield guy of the future, think not. Rosario and Buxton both could play there. But teamed in the corners with Arcia, the Twins may have a pretty solid outfield in 2015 and beyond.
12-29-2013, 03:41 PM #5
for what it is worth, which is very little of course, I think that the twins future outfield will be Rosario, Buxton, Hicks, with Arcia at DH and getting time in the corners.
12-29-2013, 09:47 PM #6
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It will all boil down to whether he can hit the curve ball.
12-30-2013, 10:12 AM #7
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12-30-2013, 11:56 AM #8
Don't put any money on it though, because weird stuff happens all the time!!