Hicks, who fired two perfect innings in which he racked up four strikeouts during Tuesday's loss to the Padres, now sports a 19:3 K:BB over his last 10 appearances.

The 21-year-old phenom also sports an unblemished ERA through five June outings while recording multiple punchouts in four of them. The assumption that Hicks' triple-digit fastball and sinker would automatically lead to an eye-popping amount of missed bats remained largely unfounded until late May, when he began incorporating more offspeed stuff into his repertoire with the aid of pitching coach Mike Maddux. The returns on that experiment continue to be stellar, and with bullpen mate Luke Gregerson now expected to miss another 4-to-6 weeks following arthroscopic knee surgery, Hicks should continue seeing high-leverage work for the foreseeable future.

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