On June 26, when second baseman Starlin Castro limped off Guaranteed Rate Field in Chicago with a strained right hamstring, the Yankees were suddenly without three of their hottest hitters.
It just seemed like a division title wasn’t in the cards; Masahiro Tanaka and his unsightly ERA were the first apparent issue, followed by Judge, who hit a wall after the All-Star break.
First Hicks returned with a bang, clubbing a late go-ahead homer against the Red Sox and making a game-saving outfield assist on Aug. 11 that jumpstarted a 6–3 stretch.
All of this is not to discount the incredible month of August that Gary Sanchez has enjoyed, or Luis Severino’s breakout campaign—those two have provided a surge for the stretch run as well.
Though the injury bug found Hicks again during the Boston series (manager Joe Girardi said his strained left oblique shouldn’t keep him out long), he did his part to help the Yankees go.
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