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Thread: Article: It's All Right: Hicks Gives Up Switch-Hitting

  1. #101
    He's going to have to figure it out at the major league level, and that would probably be his choice too. I'm sure he'd rather keep adding the service time while he makes the adjustment. If its bad for anybody, its the Twins, because right about the time he blossums as a player is when he'll be eligible for the big bucks. Very proud of him for scrapping the switch hitting. The kid is going to be fine.

  2. #102
    Owner MVP Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shane Wahl View Post
    many, many months ago I got a bit smacked around for claiming that switching to RH only would be a big, big learning issue . . . and now most seem to agree with that view.
    You just described the main reason why I didn't want him to give up on switch-hitting at all. The learning curve is going to be enormous for Aaron in the next several months. Can he do it? I have no idea but it seems that he'd be best served by doing it in Rochester, not Target Field.

  3. #103
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brock Beauchamp View Post
    You just described the main reason why I didn't want him to give up on switch-hitting at all. The learning curve is going to be enormous for Aaron in the next several months. Can he do it? I have no idea but it seems that he'd be best served by doing it in Rochester, not Target Field.
    I can't argue it would be easier to learn at AAA, but of course the Twins don't have many options. One would hope that he stands in the batters box for every righty's bullpen session, at a minimum. You can probably get decent semi-pro pitchers to come in every day for pennies and pitch to him to speed this up. But I am probably giving the Twins too much credit for thinking this through.

    On a side note, Hicks has taken a lot of flack on these boards for his defense, but had a great night last night robbing a 3 run HR and an absolute bullet to 2B preventing the runner from tagging (separate plays).
    Last edited by tobi0040; 05-28-2014 at 08:20 AM.

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  5. #104
    Owner MVP Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tobi0040 View Post
    I can't argue it would be easier to learn at AAA, but of course the Twins don't have many options. One would hope that he stands in the batters box for every righty's bullpen session, at a minimum. You can probably get decent semi-pro pitchers to come in every day for pennies and pitch to him to speed this up. But I am probably giving the Twins too much credit for thinking this through.
    I agree that right now, the Twins really have no choice. Earlier in this thread, I believe I said something along the lines of "it's insane for Hicks to make this adjustment at the MLB level; he needs to be sent down the moment a replacement is available".

    Right now, there are no replacements available so I guess Hicks gets to do this at the MLB level, at least for awhile.

  6. #105
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan View Post
    Would you like to call up Kohl Stewart and let him learn at the major league level?

    I would imagine your answer is no. Answer A with the same logic.
    Yay for ridiculous extremes.
    I couldn't be a player because of bad eyesight, so I decided to be an umpire instead.

  7. #106
    Twins News Team All-Star TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tibs View Post
    Yay for ridiculous extremes.
    People are talking out of both sides of their mouth on this one. I honestly can't understand why anyone would suggest it's a good idea to have someone learn a totally new skill against competition already beating them routinely. It's an incredibly poor development idea. Not unlike if we were to just call up Stewart tomorrow with the idea that "he has to work it out against MLB hitting someday right?"

    You want to keep him up out of necessity by poor roster decisions? Ok, I guess. I'm not convinced of it, but I get it. You want him to fight through it because it'll help to be at the MLB level for this? That's certifiably crazy in my mind and people are making that argument. And they are using a whole host of small sample sizes to do it. This thread and the other are full of examples of it. If I argued his 0-2 last night was an example of a failed experiment it would only be mildly more invalid than saying "Look at the last 40 at bats!". Ditto the idea that one very nice catch last night invalidates the fact that he runs around out there like he's dodging drone attacks. (Credit: Labombo) Lots of subpar or struggling defenders make nice plays. With his athleticism I'd expect nothing less, but one spectacular play doesn't make up for the league lead in F8BC. (Figure 8s before making a catch)

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  9. #107
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    theleviathan and Labombo with some great lines......don't agree with all the conclusions, but getting there was worth it totally
    Lighten up Francis....

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan View Post
    People are talking out of both sides of their mouth on this one. I honestly can't understand why anyone would suggest it's a good idea to have someone learn a totally new skill against competition already beating them routinely. It's an incredibly poor development idea. Not unlike if we were to just call up Stewart tomorrow with the idea that "he has to work it out against MLB hitting someday right?"

    You want to keep him up out of necessity by poor roster decisions? Ok, I guess. I'm not convinced of it, but I get it. You want him to fight through it because it'll help to be at the MLB level for this? That's certifiably crazy in my mind and people are making that argument. And they are using a whole host of small sample sizes to do it. This thread and the other are full of examples of it. If I argued his 0-2 last night was an example of a failed experiment it would only be mildly more invalid than saying "Look at the last 40 at bats!". Ditto the idea that one very nice catch last night invalidates the fact that he runs around out there like he's dodging drone attacks. (Credit: Labombo) Lots of subpar or struggling defenders make nice plays. With his athleticism I'd expect nothing less, but one spectacular play doesn't make up for the league lead in F8BC. (Figure 8s before making a catch)
    Yeah, I am in complete agreement with your entire post..... but in the interests of fairness to the much-recently-maligned Aaron Hicks, and in full disclosure...... let's be blatantly honest here, on a F8BC/150 ranking, our newly-discovered, former-budding-SS prospect and now back-up CFer, Danny Santana, is the league leader at the position, nonpareil.

  11. #109
    Senior Member All-Star cmathewson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan View Post
    (Figure 8s before making a catch)
    I knew you'd bring up last night's catch and the horrible route he took on it before robbing the home run.
    "If you'da been thinkin' you wouldn't 'a thought that.."

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    Quote Originally Posted by cmathewson View Post
    I knew you'd bring up last night's catch and the horrible route he took on it before robbing the home run.
    I know Levi was not commenting specifically on a figure 8 last night, but his route was flawless. Straight to the wall, if we want to nitpick he had to reach back about a foot. A great play.

    http://larrybrownsports.com/baseball...h-video/230737

  13. #111
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmathewson View Post
    I knew you'd bring up last night's catch and the horrible route he took on it before robbing the home run.
    It wasn't "flawless" but it was a great catch. He still, as demonstrated on it, has trouble tracking the ball without watching it, but that was a very difficult grab that he made a nice catch on.

    But one good catch doesn't change all the other circular routes he's taken. It's just one great catch.

  14. #112
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    Quote Originally Posted by jokin View Post
    Yeah, I am in complete agreement with your entire post..... but in the interests of fairness to the much-recently-maligned Aaron Hicks, and in full disclosure...... let's be blatantly honest here, on a F8BC/150 ranking, our newly-discovered, former-budding-SS prospect and now back-up CFer, Danny Santana, is the league leader at the position, nonpareil.
    Not enough opportunities to qualify, but yeah...they play the position very similarly.

  15. #113
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan View Post
    It wasn't "flawless" but it was a great catch. He still, as demonstrated on it, has trouble tracking the ball without watching it, but that was a very difficult grab that he made a nice catch on.

    But one good catch doesn't change all the other circular routes he's taken. It's just one great catch.
    He got back to the wall in time to time his jump perfectly and be able to reach the ball with his glove. What more are you looking for in a HR-robbing catch?

  16. #114
    Senior Member All-Star cmathewson's Avatar
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    One thing about circular routes: Sometimes he does them on purpose, so that he can get in a better throwing position. Last night he turned the way he did to get a better angle on the jump. As long as he's catching the ball, I'm fine with it.

  17. #115
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    I went back and watched the replay... It was a great catch and he gets full credit for it.

    Aaron saved runs and the ball game with that catch. I loved it.

    He did misjudge it and was forced to reach back for it and I believe that Aaron hasn't displayed his full potential defensively yet... He does have work to do. But... I don't want to diminish the importance of that catch.

    It was huge and I tip my cap.

  18. #116
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmathewson View Post
    One thing about circular routes: Sometimes he does them on purpose, so that he can get in a better throwing position. Last night he turned the way he did to get a better angle on the jump. As long as he's catching the ball, I'm fine with it.
    Um...he jumped the wrong angle....that's why he had to reach back to get it. He was a full foot (maybe more) too far to the left of the ball. He just has enough athleticism to make up for it.

    It was a spectacular catch any way you slice it, but that doesn't mean he didn't make it a bit harder on himself by getting lost on the flight path of the ball. That is not knocking the catch, that's just not overglorifying it either. It wasn't perfect, but he made it and that's what matters. It was a helluva catch.

    Also, you don't do figure 8's to set up for a throw. Start behind the ball or take an angle? Sure. Literally turn your body around? Ugh...no.
    Last edited by TheLeviathan; 05-28-2014 at 03:18 PM.

  19. #117
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan View Post
    Um...he jumped the wrong angle....that's why he had to reach back to get it. He was a full foot (maybe more) too far to the left of the ball. He just has enough athleticism to make up for it.

    It was a spectacular catch any way you slice it, but that doesn't mean he didn't make it a bit harder on himself by getting lost on the flight path of the ball. That is not knocking the catch, that's just not overglorifying it either. It wasn't perfect, but he made it and that's what matters. It was a helluva catch.

    Also, you don't do figure 8's to set up for a throw. Start behind the ball or take an angle? Sure. Literally turn your body around? Ugh...no.
    The ball was crushed. An OF has a quarter of a second to turn and run. He did and tracked it with nearly a straight line to where the ball ended up, about a foot over. Anyone criticizing his route on that play is nit picking. That was Torii circa 2004.

    I read he has 3 over the wall catches since last year. Only Carlos Gomez has more and Hicks has only played in 120 games over that time period. It seems odd that he has that many given every night his routes are criticized on this site.

  20. #118
    Senior Member All-Star cmathewson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tobi0040 View Post
    The ball was crushed. An OF has a quarter of a second to turn and run. He did and tracked it with nearly a straight line to where the ball ended up, about a foot over. Anyone criticizing his route on that play is nit picking. That was Torii circa 2004.

    I read he has 3 over the wall catches since last year. Only Carlos Gomez has more and Hicks has only played in 120 games over that time period. It seems odd that he has that many given every night his routes are criticized on this site.
    This. Plus, he seems to have a couple of other diving catches a week. He had one just two days ago. Like I have said, people are spoiled. They got to see Span, who was very underrated, imho, and Hunter, who was a bit overrated. However they were rated, they were two of the best I've seen at judging fly balls. Aaron doesn't have their level of skill, but he's good. And he makes up for any lack of judgement with speed and hustle. Can he learn and get better? Absolutely. But he's pretty good now.
    "If you'da been thinkin' you wouldn't 'a thought that.."

  21. #119
    Twins News Team All-Star TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tobi0040 View Post
    The ball was crushed. An OF has a quarter of a second to turn and run. He did and tracked it with nearly a straight line to where the ball ended up, about a foot over. Anyone criticizing his route on that play is nit picking. That was Torii circa 2004.

    I read he has 3 over the wall catches since last year. Only Carlos Gomez has more and Hicks has only played in 120 games over that time period. It seems odd that he has that many given every night his routes are criticized on this site.
    It wasn't perfect. He made a great catch but he made it harder on himself too. That's just being honest about what happened and not trying to paint it as perfection.

    I'd argue given this team's pitching staff Hicks has had more opportunities than most to rob homeruns (rimshot?), but in truth flashy players don't make for great defenders. Great defenders make all the plays, typically making them routinely. Hicks has often struggled with routine plays.

    I'd give up every flashy play this season just to avoid one of these. And those happen far too often.

  22. #120
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan View Post
    It wasn't perfect. He made a great catch but he made it harder on himself too. That's just being honest about what happened and not trying to paint it as perfection.

    I'd argue given this team's pitching staff Hicks has had more opportunities than most to rob homeruns (rimshot?), but in truth flashy players don't make for great defenders. Great defenders make all the plays, typically making them routinely. Hicks has often struggled with routine plays.

    I'd give up every flashy play this season just to avoid one of these. And those happen far too often.
    You'd trade a 3 run HR for a single out? I sure wouldn't. You clearly just don't like Hicks being in CF for the Twins, otherwise you wouldn't try so hard to criticize a HR-robbing catch.

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