After eight injury-riddled seasons in the Bronx, the New York Yankees decided it was time to part ways with Aaron Hicks, designating him for assignment on Saturday.
Hicks’ Major League journey started in 2008 when the Minnesota Twins took him in the first round with the 14th overall pick. He quickly rose through the minor leagues and made the opening-day roster 2013 as the Twins starting center fielder.
The California native struggled in his rookie season, hitting just .192 with eight home runs and 27 RBIs before being sent down to Triple-A for the remainder of the season.
Hicks started 2014 again in the major leagues, but it was another year filled with struggles as Hicks played in 69 games, hitting .215 with one home run and 18 RBIs before being demoted to Double-A.
2015 was Hicks’ best year with the Twins playing in 97 games, hitting .256 with 11 home runs and 33 RBIs while having a 98 OPS+.
In the off-season, the Twins decided to part ways with Hicks, trading him to the Yankees for John Ryan Murphy.
Hicks had a quiet first season in the Bronx, playing in 123 games, hitting .217 with eight home runs and 31 RBIs, with a 65 OPS+.
2017 is when Hicks started to break out. An oblique injury limited him to just 88 games, but when he played, he hit a career-high .266 with 15 home runs and 52 RBIs, with a 122 OPS+.
In 2018, Hicks managed to stay healthy, playing in 137 games while hitting .248 with a career-high 27 home runs and 79 RBIs with an OPS+ of 127. The California native’s fantastic campaign earned him MVP votes for the first time in his career, finishing 22nd.
The Yankees extended Hicks in the offseason to a seven-year 70 million dollar extension, but then the injury struggles began. From 2019-2021 Hicks only played in 145 of a potential 384 games.
Hicks played in 130 games in 2022 but took a massive step back offensively, hitting .216 with eight home runs and 40 RBIs. Hicks’ offensive struggles have carried over to 2023, hitting .188 with one home run and five RBIs before being designated for assignment.
So should the Mets take a chance on the Yankees’ outcast?
No, they should not. Hicks is a 33-year-old who has previously struggled with injuries, which is not another headache the Mets must handle. Moreover, even if they sign him to a minor league contract, if he were to prove himself in Triple-A Syracuse, would it be an upgrade over the Mets’ current fourth outfielder Tommy Pham?
It’s always an exciting thought when a former everyday player gets designated for assignment, but Hicks is one the Mets should pass on.