Baseball Insider

CF Aaron Hicks ticketed to make jump from Double-A to Twins

Aaron Hicks is about to make the big jump from Double-A to win the Twins center field job.

While there is no announcement yet, the handwriting appears to be on the wall. Hicks has been a standout in the Grapefruit League, hitting .370 with four home runs and 13 RBIs, and word is he's on the verge of cracking the Twins' Opening Day lineup.

Hicks is on the verge of beating out Darin Mastroianni, who will make the team but appears ticketed for a backup role at all three outfield positions. Twins people love the energy Mastroianni, 27, brings.

Hicks, 23, has been impressive, and while a couple of the home runs in a recent three-homer game were seen as wind-aided, that game helped solidify Hicks' chances. Some scouts were more impressed with Hicks' final at-bat that day, when he fought off a tough inside pitch to muscle a single, rounding out the remarkable day.

Much of the focus at Twins camp has been on the center field competition after the team traded two starting calibre center fielders this winter, Denard Span and Ben Revere, to the Nationals and Phillies, respectively, for much-needed pitching. Mastoianni has played well, too, batting .412 in 17 at-bats, but missed some time with a hamstring issue.

Hicks hit .286 with 13 home runs and 61 RBI at Double-A New Britain in 2012. But Twins people believe he can make the big jump.

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