NEW YORK — The Yankees’ efforts to upgrade their left field field this offseason have yielded no measurable improvement, and general manager Brian Cashman now says the club has veteran Aaron Hicks playing time at the position. is viewed as the most likely candidate to acquire
“He’s still really talented and everything’s out there, so I think he’s going to be an emerging guy,” Cashman told MLB Network Radio on Sirius XM. We hope Aaron Hicks comes back as a consistent player.”
Hicks endured a tough season in 2022, batting .216/.330/.313 with eight homers and 40 RBIs (86 OPS+). Guardian. Cashman said Hicks has “fully recovered” from the injury.
Hicks, who has been booed at home frequently throughout the year, suggested in September that a change of environment might benefit, telling the New York Post that “it’s tough in New York” and that “they thought this was the right thing to do.” If you don’t feel like it,” he said. I, that’s their call. If I go to another team, I know I can help them win.
But the 33-year-old Hicks still has $30 million by 2025 as the Yankees move away from Pirates Brian Reynolds’ very high asking price and seemingly never match the Twins in the Max Kepler trade. Borrowed. Season – plans to enter the spring as the presumptive favorite in left field.
The Yankees are also interested in free agent Jurrickson Plofer, who had 658 at-bats with the Padres last season. Given their roster composition, the Yankees don’t seem likely to commit that much playing time.
Barring any trades or contracts, Hicks’ main challenger is believed to be 23-year-old Oswald Cabrera. Rookie last season.
“You have young money, Cabrera, who wants to claim a claim,” said Cashman. “He showed us a lot of positive things, especially defensively, as a jack of all trades.”
Cashman also mentioned Esteban Floreal, who batted just .185 (10 in 54) in 29 big league games in 2020-22. Cashman said Floreal “craves time in the sun.”
Of course, there’s no guarantee Hicks will be a starting candidate in late January. Last spring, the Yankees reportedly camped with Gary Sanchez as starting catcher and Gio Urscella as third baseman, then traded those players to the Twins for third baseman Josh Donaldson and shortstop Isiah Kyner Falefa. , acquired catcher Ben Rothvedt.
“We’re certainly eyeing certain opportunities, but trying to match them is never easy,” Cashman said. “If it happens in February or March, so be it. But if it doesn’t, we’re ready to go with what we have.”