Aug 21, 2014; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Twins center fielder Jordan Schafer (1) makes a diving catch in the sixth inning against the Cleveland Indians at Target Field. The Minnesota Twins win 4-1. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
Unlike Hicks, Schafer doesn’t have the pedigree of a high pick from within the organization. Debuting for the Atlanta Braves in 2009, Hicks has been little more than a defensive average outfielder. He provides little at the plate (.229/.311/.310 career line) and his biggest asset is on the basepaths.
That being said, should Hicks stumble during Spring Training, Schafer will be there breathing down his neck. After posting career numbers with the Twins (.285/.345/.362) in 41 games after being claimed off of waivers, he will be out to back that up in 2015. Even with the output at the plate, Schafer was responsible for being just a 0.3 WAR player last season while being three runs worse than average.
If the Twins have to go to Schafer as their full-time centerfielder early in 2015, the end could presumably be near for Hicks. Whereas Hicks has little to win in Spring Training, he has everything to lose. The opposite can be said about Schafer.