I'm sorry if I misinterpreted you, jokin but that's the way I interpreted this statement:
Hicks has practically been dispatched to Siberia- the premise for his demotion is no longer even valid.
I don't -- and didn't -- ever see the switch hitting as the only premise for his demotion.
"It's getting your mind right and focusing on how to get better as a player, all the way around," Gardenhire said. "Get back to doing what (you) were doing. Right now, stabilizing yourself."
Now, some of that undoubtedly relates to his vacillation about switch hitting but overall it just looked as though Hicks had lost confidence -- that's probably part of what led to his initial decision to give up switch hitting.
I agree that he needs to spend more time in New Britain. If that works well, send him to Rochester for awhile. Try to undo moving him up too quickly the last two years.
All of this isn't on Aaron Hicks' head. Terry Ryan took some responsibility for the way it had gone, too. It is one of those situations that needs time to work itself out.
If you dig deeper, JB, there were all kinds of quotes from Antony on down to Gardy about how best to handle Hicks' decision to drop switch-hitting, from the day he announced it, to the day they sent him down on his rehab assignment. But you are correct, the change in his hitting MO is symptomatic of a deeper crisis of confidence, he appeared to be a rudderless sailboat in the middle of the ocean- like a boat, that when all else fails, it can still remain buoyant, only Hicks' ability to take pitches kept him afloat at the ML level. He desperately needs to get a solid game plan together and a decent amount of time to put in place- and barring catastrophic or other unforseen circumstances, he's going to get that time.
Looking at his numbers in New Britain, his K% and BB% are his best at any level he's played at, but he's still pounding the ball in the ground and/or making a lot of weak contact. He's going to need to put up some "wow" numbers and keep his head down....the drama he continually imposed on the major league club won't be so easily tolerated next time around.