Yankees allow 2 runs after LF Aaron Hicks mistakenly thinks fair ball was foul

Very little is going right for the New York Yankees these days, but left field in particular has been an issue going back to the start of the season.

The team started the season with Joey Gallo as their primary left fielder. We all know how that ended, with Gallo underperforming and subsequently booed until a trade to the Los Angeles Dodgers. The intended replacement for Gallo was trade deadline acquisition Andrew Benintendi, which was working up until Benintendi fractured his wrist.

That has left the Yankees starting underperforming center fielder Aaron Hicks in left for five out of seven games since Benintendi's injury. The low point came on Friday.

In a massively important game against the Tampa Bay Rays, Hicks tried to run down a foul ball from Wander Franco before bobbling it and stopping for a moment.

Unfortunately for Hicks, it was not a foul ball.

As Hicks waited to pick up the ball, two Tampa Bay baserunners had taken off from the moment of contact because it was two outs. Both would score to put the Rays up 3-0 on what was eventually scored a double for Franco.

Yankees fans aren't going to be happy seeing that from any player on their team, much less a player who entered Friday hitting .212/.328/.298 with 90 strikeouts in 401 plate appearances.

Those fans reacted by calling Hicks just about the worst name they could think of for a Yankees left-fielder:

Hicks' blunder was basically a single, badly used second in a long, long season, but it's not going to take much to trigger frustration at Yankee Stadium these days.

Once owners of the best record in baseball, the Yankees have gone 14-22 since the beginning of August and watched an AL East that once reached 15.5 games dwindle down to 3.5 games — two in the loss column — after Friday's 4-2 loss. Hicks is one of the players who have struggled in that time, hitting .133 in the span.

New York Yankees left fielder Aaron Hicks reacts after missing a catch on a RBI double hit by Tampa Bay Rays' Wander Franco during the fourth inning of a baseball game Friday, Sept. 9, 2022, in New York. (AP Photo/Adam Hunger)
Aaron Hicks would probably like this one back. (AP Photo/Adam Hunger) (ASSOCIATED PRESS)