Yankees outfielder Aaron Hicks was surely hoping for a fresh start this year after rebooting in the offseason.
But so far, things aren't playing out that way in Grapefruit League action.
On Friday, Hicks, starting in left field against the Tigers, committed an embarrassing blunder with his glove when he was unable to corral a high pop fly in shallow left-center off the bat of Detroit's Cole Keith.
After curiously calling off shortstop Anthony Volpe, Hicks initially appeared to reel in the ball for a circus catch, only to lose control of it during a wild somersault.
The gaffe came with two outs and nobody on base in the bottom of third inning, and was generously ruled a triple for Keith. The next batter, Andrew Knapp, followed with a two-run homer.
On the plus side for Hicks, he had a productive day at the plate, going 2-for-3 with a walk and a stolen base.
But that was cold comfort for Yankees fans who have made Hicks a frequent target since at least last season, when the 33-year-old hit a paltry .216/.330/.313 in 450 plate appearances. Last month, shortly after reporting to camp, Hicks admitted baseball stopped being fun for him during the trying season.
Unfortunately, Friday's wasn't the first miscue of the new year for Hicks. Earlier this month, he gave up on a lazy flyball along the left-field line, assuming it was headed into the stands, only to see it land in fair territory.
The timing of Friday's gaffe was particularly unfortunate, coming just two days after the Yankees optioned touted outfield prospect Jasson Dominguez to minor league camp, a move which was not especially popular among Yankees fans.
To say the least, Yankees fans on social media were not amused by the prospect of watching Hicks on a daily basis once the regular season gets underway, a likely scenario with starting center fielder Harrison Bader sidelined by an oblique injury.
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