When the New York Yankees finally admitted defeat and cut Aaron Hicks loose, eating $27.5 million in the process, Los Angeles Dodgers fans wondered if he'd be worth scooping up given how poorly Trayce Thompson and David Peralta had been playing. Chris Taylor isn't exactly earning gold stars, either, while James Outman has come crashing back down to earth.
But the Dodgers passed. Thompson was eventually placed on the 60-day injured list and Peralta has thankfully picked up his play a little bit.
Some might say the Dodgers need more offensive help, though, especially at a low cost, since their pitching staff is floundering and they will need to pay top dollar at the trade deadline (and in the offseason) to address that area of the roster.
Maybe the Dodgers were still dealing with Joey Gallo-esque PTSD and didn't think it was a good idea to acquire another Yankees outcast, but Hicks landed with the Baltimore Orioles and is now tearing the cover off the ball (and playing an impressive center field) for one of the league's top contenders.
The O's are trolling the Yankees about it, too, for good measure. Turns out, they should perhaps be trolling the 28 other teams who passed on him.
Did Dodgers make a mistake not swiping Aaron Hicks from Yankees?
Remember, this would've cost the Dodgers the league minimum, too! The Yankees are on the hook for the remainder of his seven-year, $70 million contract, so it's not like the Dodgers would've had to add more weight to their payroll.
In 11 games with the Orioles, Hicks is slashing .364/.488/.667 with 10 runs scored, 2 home runs, 5 RBI, a stolen base, 8 walks and just 7 strikeouts. The small sample size should eventually normalize, but it's worth wondering what he could be doing in a lineup that features four of the best hitters in MLB with Mookie Betts, Freddie Freeman, Will Smith and JD Martinez.
Not to mention, Hicks returning to his defensive days pre-2020 would've been a huge asset as manager Dave Roberts continues to shuffle around his outfield with underwhelming/struggling options at the moment.
Hindsight is always 20/20, but the Dodgers' outfield situation really couldn't have gotten worse. And the fact Hicks could've essentially been had for free, which would've allowed LA to keep Jonny DeLuca at Triple-A longer to develop and avoid sitting on the bench for most of the time since his promotion.
Wouldn't necessarily call this a mistake, but it's certainly a missed opportunity.