Brought on as a possible small-side platoon option in the outfield, Aaron Hicks started nearly every game against left-handed pitching in his first year in the Bronx. But after hitting .307 with an OPS of .870 against southpaws in 2015, the 27-year-old struggled tremendously against lefties in 2016 to the tune of a lowly .161/.213/.271 slash line. Although the switch-hitter was better against righties, he managed just a .217 average overall. The outfielder maintained a low .251 BABIP, so poor luck may have been partly to blame, and seven of his eight home runs came at Yankee Stadium, indicating he might be able to take advantage of the hitter-friendly home field going forward. It was frustrating for Hicks to take a step back last season following the best campaign of his career in 2015, but he's still just 27 and will likely be given the chance to win a platoon role again in 2017.
Hicks agreed to a one-year deal with the Yankees on Friday, avoiding arbitration. The terms of the agreement were not announced. It was a season to forget last year for Hicks, as he not only struggled against righties (86 wRC+), but was awful against lefties (25 wRC+), and he was supposed to be a southpaw killer. He enters this season as a bench bat for the Yankees.
Hicks went 1-for-2 with a pair of walks in Friday's 8-1 loss to the Orioles. The young outfielder was the only Yankee player to get on base three times in the blowout loss. Following a dismal first half of the season, Hicks has been more consistent after the All-Star break, with a .250/.311/.390 line over 136 at-bats after he managed to hit just .197 before the Midsummer Classic.
Hicks is not in the lineup for Wednesday's game against the Red Sox. Hicks started six of the last eight games in right field, but he went just 1-for-8 over the last two days, so he will give way to Mason Williams on Wednesday night.
Hicks went 1-for-4 with a home run and two RBI in Monday's victory against the Blue Jays. Hicks has had a quiet season in New York, but has raised his batting average by 33 points since the start of August. His eight home runs and 30 RBI aren't far off from his numbers from a season ago, but Hicks has been an afterthought on the bases this season, stealing just three bases.
Hicks (groin) is back in the lineup Monday against the Blue Jays, Eric Boland of Newsday reports. Hicks was held out of action Sunday due to a groin issue, but it appears to be only minor, and he'll be back at his usual spot in right field Monday night. Hicks will bat eighth in the order against Toronto's J.A. Happ.