Yankees’ former outfielder is dominating with new team

aaron hicks, yankees
Apr 4, 2023; Bronx, New York, USA; New York Yankees left fielder Aaron Hicks (31) reacts after grounding into an out during the eighth inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Yankees might have given up on outfielder Aaron Hicks, but the AL East champion Baltimore Orioles saw potential—and it’s paying off. Since his departure from the Yankees in mid-May, Hicks has proven his mettle in an Orioles jersey.

In just 64 games with the Orioles, Hicks boasts impressive stats: a slash line of .279/.386/.431, seven home runs, and 31 RBIs. Even more remarkable is his OPS+ of 130. Should this performance persist, it would mark a career-high in a full season for him.

Before leaving the Yankees, Hicks struggled, hitting a mere .188 and managing only one home run and 13 hits. At 33, many might have thought his best days were behind him. But a shift in surroundings proved transformative. Not only has Hicks resurrected his career, but he’s also emerged as a pivotal player in the Orioles’ triumphant season.

As the Orioles bask in the glory of their AL East title win and celebrate their first 100-win season since 1980, Hicks stands out as a beacon of consistent offensive output and a valuable outfield resource in their vibrant and youthful lineup.

The Yankees’ Post-Hicks Era

Contrasting the Orioles’ ascent, the Yankees have faced turbulence post-Hicks. Their record stands at a disheartening 54-58 since May 20, which means they’re set to miss the postseason—a feat they haven’t encountered since 2016. While one can’t pin the Yankees’ decline solely on letting go of Hicks during a slump, his current form with the Orioles does make one wonder about the lost potential.

This season, the Yankees have tried a myriad of players in left field. Names like Jake Bauers, Billy McKinney, Isiah Kiner-Falefa, Giancarlo Stanton, Everson Pereira, and Oswaldo Cabrera joined Hicks in manning the position, but none managed to deliver compelling results.

The decision to part ways with Hicks might have seemed right at the time for the Yankees. Yet, there’s an undeniable twinge of regret, especially watching him flourish with a divisional rival.

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