At one point, he was a part of this 2021 Yankee team, except most of his power had vanished, along with his good eye. It was kind of a mess.
Then Hicks was further dinged with a wrist injury that he theoretically could’ve rehabbed in a best-case scenario. It seemed like a risky proposition, though, according to Mark Teixeira, who battled a partial tear in 2009 before eventually ripping his sheath clean, having the surgery and losing a degree of his pop.
Something tells me the Yanks are no longer entertaining picking up Hicks’ 2026 team option.
So how do Kim Ng and old friend Derek Jeter find themselves involved here? The rebuilding Marlins are looking for a center fielder after trading Starling Marte, and the whole reason the Yankees locked up Hicks in the first place was because there weren’t a lot of mid-tier starters approaching free agency in the near future, at a level below the George Springers of the world.
Could there potentially be a match here? Miami’s pitching rich and the Yankees might need to clear space for Jasson Dominguez sooner rather than later. Hicks may never be a 5.0-WAR player again, but if he regains his 20-homer power (120 OPS+ or higher in 2017, 2018 and 2020) and trademark patience, he’ll be a relative bargain at $10 million AAV for a few more seasons.
This Yankees-Marlins trade could get Aaron Hicks to Miami.
In order to facilitate this deal, the Yanks will have to eat a lot of money — but it’ll be less money than if Hicks’ entire contract plays out as scheduled, so … win-win?
The Marlins have all the pitching in the world, but Brian Cashman is going to have to look a level down in the tiered rankings here. No Trevor Rogers, no Sixto Sanchez, no Sandy Alcantara, no Max Meyer. Maybe Elieser Hernandez? Maybe Nick Neidert? Possibly Braxton Garrett?
We’ve got our eye on someone else, though, and we’ve decided not to sell Hicks for a middling starting pitching option, but rather attach prospects to Hicks to get our hands on Pablo Lopez, who’s reportedly at least somewhat available.
Lopez, who was tied to the Dodgers (nope!) a bit this deadline but will likely stay put, has cemented himself as a strong No. 2 in any rotation other than Miami’s this season, sporting a 1.09 WHIP and 3.03 ERA with 111 whiffs in 101 innings pitched. We’re not delusional enough to think Hicks would be a Lopez centerpiece; it’s just more fun to examine a mega-deal than advocate for “Hicks for Neidert” and call it a day (though that’s more likely).
While Yankee fans jump on the Hicks-to-MIA bandwagon, we’re going to attach Anthony Volpe (who Miami asked about in the Starling Marte talks) and Everson Pereira to Hicks and see if that’ll get the job done for Lopez. Add Deivi Garcia if you must.
We would love it if Hicks returned to his trademark levels of production and gave us somewhere between a 115-120 OPS+ with standout defense next season.
As of now, though, it’s tough to envision that contract working out for all four remaining guaranteed years. Let’s see if we can spin him to South Beach.