Here’s What the Yankees Can Do with Aaron Hicks while Harrison Bader is Out

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On Monday, the only thing Aaron Hicks could do was wear it. He could hear the boos, which were probably the same ones that became Joey Gallo’s theme song whenever he entered or left the arena. The Yankees’ center fielder knows how frustrating it is and he knows it.

Hicks did not play against the Rays on Tuesday. The lineup featured Marwin Gonzalez in right field and Aaron Judge in the middle.

Hicks is 5-for-42 this month, which ranks fifth worst in the majors, and he is hitting just .173 with runners in scoring position for the season. It’s obvious that the team is not producing the kind of results that Hicks and the fans are hoping for, but what can the Yankees do about it?

At the trade deadline, general manager Brian Cashman gave up a good starting pitcher, Jordan Montgomery, after getting Frankie Montas in exchange for Harrison Bader, who is a great defensive center fielder. But the New Yorker hasn’t played since June 26 because of plantar fasciitis.

Also, it is not clear when he will be able to help and support them.

Bader, then 28 years old, won a Gold Glove in 2021. In 72 games this season, he hit .256/.303/.370 with 15 steals.This season, he saved two runs with his defense, according to FanGraphs.

As a stopgap while Hicks figures it out and Bader recovers, moving Judge back to center field could work. As a result, Tim Locastro, Gonzalez, or Hicks would have to play right field until Bader returns, or until Giancarlo Stanton returns from his Achilles injury and resumes his regular outfield role.

The Yankees have a promising young center fielder at Triple-A who has hit .284/.365/.487 with an OPS of .852 in 88 games. Estevan Florial hasn’t gotten many opportunities in the major leagues. Florial has a .206/.325/.353 slash line with a .678 OPS, a home run, and two steals in 40 major league at-bats. The Yankees have always seemed worried about the 24-year-old’s strikeout rate, but his athleticism could give a team that is struggling through the dog days of summer a boost.

The Yankees are currently observing Hicks’s difficult situation..

Hicks’ Monday nightmare began when he misread a flyball by David Peralta. He turned the wrong way and lost the ball.

It turned into a leadoff triple.

Monday’s game proved it. He ended a second-inning Yankees rally. First and second, he struck out. Worse was his fourth-inning double play.

Hicks is hitting .218/.339/.305 with a .644 OPS. Hicks is in the fourth year of a seven-year, $70 million deal and has struggled to regain his 2018 form. He hampered himself with Tommy John surgery in 2019 and wrist surgery in 2021.

Hicks last homered on July 9 at Fenway. His season is miserable.

What do you think, leave a comment below?

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