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Thread: Leadoff Spot

  1. #1

    Leadoff Spot

    As I was at the Opening Day game (and not posting here), I saw Aaron Hicks strike out a few times and wondered if anyone had started a "Hicks is overmatched" thread yet on Twins Daily. Doesn't appear to be the case...applause is in order.

    Wasn't a great debut by him overall, BUT he was mostly facing the likes of Justin Verlander and Joaquin Benoit - not the easiest way to break into the league. He took a nice walk against Benoit in the 8th that could have been significant, but there were two outs and Mauer flied out.

    I just have no idea who the leadoff guy would even be if it Hicks doesn't work out. When Mauer is #2 hitter (and would never lead off), who is Plan B? Certainly not Dozier or Florimon. I liked the Span and Revere moves just fine, but if there's an injury to Hicks or he just turns out to be awful...yikes.

  2. #2
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    What WOULD happen: Mastro would replace Hicks and bat leadoff.

    What SHOULD happen: If Hicks doesn't work out, Carroll needs to replace someone and hit leadoff.

  3. #3
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    Too early to get down on Hicks and Verlander makes a lot of people look bad. I was impressed by his walk. He didn't let the strikeouts get in his head too much. If he's struggling in a month, they'll send him down and then .... yeah, probably Mastro. Yikes.

    I like Hicks a lot. I know he'll stuggle but long term, I think he'll be better than Span for us.

  4. #4
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    I don't think anyone is down on Hicks, I think OP is just forming a hypothetical.

  5. #5
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    Leave Hicks up unless it appears being up is crushing his future. Even struggling would not be an issue for me. He's the future leadoff hitter for this team, leave him up and have him grow and learn.....as for yesterday, if anyone is worried about a player's first game, against maybe the best pitcher in baseball.....
    Lighten up Francis....

  6. #6
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    I said it several weeks ago somewhere that I thought Hicks would struggle this year and hit in the .230's or .240's. He will still walk a fair amount so the OBP will be >.300. I also think his power will be disappointing this year. Let's give him a .100ish isoP and the result is a mid .600's OPS. Long term he will still be a good player but more of a .260/.340/.400/.740 type of hitter.

  7. #7
    Senior Member All-Star cmathewson's Avatar
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    Really? Three strikeouts on opening day against the Verlanator and you're already calling for his replacement? Really?
    "If you'da been thinkin' you wouldn't 'a thought that.."

  8. #8
    Senior Member All-Star Badsmerf's Avatar
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    Thinking Hicks will be a future all-star is naive. I think kab is pretty close to what he'll look like. He has contact issue and not enough power to off-set it. He is patient and draws walks so I'm more interested in his OBP this season. To me, an OBP of .330 would be a good season for him. I don't think it is too far fetched to hope for a .700 OPS with 20+ steals.
    Do or do not. There is no try.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmathewson View Post
    Really? Three strikeouts on opening day against the Verlanator and you're already calling for his replacement? Really?
    Who called for his replacement?
    Lighten up Francis....

  10. #10
    Senior Member All-Star cmathewson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike wants wins View Post
    Who called for his replacement?
    It was implied. Just bringing up the issue after three at bats in the kid's first game, and following up with a lot of negative projections, implies that people think it will likely happen. My point is, give the kid time to settle in before you start speculating on who will replace him on his ultimate demotion.

    I don't think it's fair to Hicks to predict he'll be ROY or an All-Star or whatever. But I also think a lot of the projections are low.

    For example, the formulas that predict how a guy will do in the majors, given their performance at AA or AAA are based on averages. Those averages are brought down by non-prospects and fringe players who get opportunities in emergency settings. Nobody would say Hicks is a non-prospect or a fringe player. He's a BA top 100 prospect who should outperform those averages by 20 or 30%.

    If I had to make a projection, I'd say .270/.360/.400. I realize that is not supported by the formulas. But I don't care. Call me a homer or whatever, I don't care. I've watched him enough to know he is unlikely to wash out. I don't even want to consider the possibility at this point.

    It's like saying to your wife, "you know, I'm the last person to say anything about someone's weight, but what if you put on a different blouse today?" It's just a rhetorical way of calling your wife fat. Just don't do it.
    "If you'da been thinkin' you wouldn't 'a thought that.."

  11. #11
    Twins Moderator MVP ashburyjohn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmathewson View Post
    It was implied.
    It was inferred.

  12. #12
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    I thought the OP was very clear that he was not calling for his head, but was starting a discussion.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Big-Leaguer Physics Guy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike wants wins View Post
    I thought the OP was very clear that he was not calling for his head, but was starting a discussion.
    I concur. My guess is .350 OBP/.725 - .750 OPS.

  14. #14
    Senior Member All-Star Badsmerf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmathewson View Post
    For example, the formulas that predict how a guy will do in the majors, given their performance at AA or AAA are based on averages. Those averages are brought down by non-prospects and fringe players who get opportunities in emergency settings. Nobody would say Hicks is a non-prospect or a fringe player. He's a BA top 100 prospect who should outperform those averages by 20 or 30%.

    If I had to make a projection, I'd say .270/.360/.400. I realize that is not supported by the formulas. But I don't care. Call me a homer or whatever, I don't care. I've watched him enough to know he is unlikely to wash out. I don't even want to consider the possibility at this point.

    It's like saying to your wife, "you know, I'm the last person to say anything about someone's weight, but what if you put on a different blouse today?" It's just a rhetorical way of calling your wife fat. Just don't do it.
    First off, your argument is based on what? Those averages and formulas you referenced are based on years of results from all prospects, not just non-prospects but guys like Mauer and Cabrera who outperform their minor league careers. Dismissing them is simply ignoring overwhelming evidence, or just being ignorant of them. I would like to know more about why you feel Hicks can outperform his past 4 years results by 20 or 30%. The numbers you referenced are what I am hoping from Hicks in his prime (with a little more power) not his rookie year! I like him and his approach, just would like to know where these high expectations are coming from.

    Also, if my wife is fat, I'd tell her. I firmly believe in not lying to your wife, including things she might not want to hear. You owe her that much IMO. If she doesn't want to hear it, she shouldn't ask.
    Do or do not. There is no try.

  15. #15
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    Looks like a first round pick that just isn't going to work out for the Twins.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Brooks View Post
    I don't think anyone is down on Hicks, I think OP is just forming a hypothetical.
    Yes It is actually to Hicks' advantage that we aren't overflowing with tons of other alternatives. My point was if Hicks failed or was sent down, what would we do? The answer has to be Mastroianni, but I don't like him as a leadoff guy either. Joe Benson might be the first OF called up, and he certainly hasn't demonstrated MLB "patience" at the plate.

    Probably a "lost season" anyway, but I just don't want to go to the ballpark and see Florimon or Escobar leading off because they "look" the part physically.

    NOT calling for Hicks' head. I think the job is his as long as you can tolerate giving him regular MLB at-bats. My point was simply: "If not him...then....who?" Definitely pulling for Hicks - his turnaround was very Denard Span-like in the sense that some people were starting to leave him for dead, and then he fixed all the things that supposedly kept him from being a productive MLB'er. Hicks is younger, but he doesn't have a long track record of doing those things as a pro. For this year, I would honestly be happy with a .250 BA, .700+ OPS, and 10 HR's if his defense is solid.
    Last edited by StormJH1; 04-02-2013 at 03:07 PM.

  17. #17
    Senior Member All-Star LaBombo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by StormJH1 View Post
    As I was at the Opening Day game (and not posting here), I saw Aaron Hicks strike out a few times and wondered if anyone had started a "Hicks is overmatched" thread yet on Twins Daily. Doesn't appear to be the case...applause is in order.
    And if Hicks IS over-matched after a few weeks in the majors, let's hope there will be more applause in order for a board that is not overflowing with proof of the existence of a center fielder corollary to Nichols' Law of Catcher Defense.

  18. #18
    Senior Member Big-Leaguer jimbo92107's Avatar
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    I'm not worried about Aaron Hicks. He has developed three aspects of poise that will carry him through rough patches. Physically he is always on balance, and his mechanics are sound. Emotionally he appears to be quite calm and centered, able to avoid temptations like trying to swing harder and harder after every strikeout. Intellectually he appears well aware of the tactical context of the baseball situation. Hicks plays the game looking for opportunities to put pressure on the other team. A guy like that is always more likely to make smart decisions in the field and at the plate.

    I'm not worried about Aaron Hicks. He's got the baseball sense of a Kent Hrbek, with the physical gifts of a Carlos Gomez.

  19. #19
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    Hicks will be in the majors most likely for the entire season in my opinion. It is really too early for us to start saying he should be sent down to AAA. He's only played one game, where he had to face Justin verlander who is a former MVP. If I recall correctly a ball wasn't even hit to him in center. So please people give him time to adjust to major league pitching and the Target Field outfield.

    P.S. he is the only lead off hitter the twins have as long as they keep him in the lineup. If he gets a day off or a injury it will be mastroanni playing center and lead off.

  20. #20
    Twins Moderator MVP Riverbrian's Avatar
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    Mastro is the choice and I'll bet that he will be in that spot when Hicks gets a day off.

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