Why Yankees replaced Aaron Hicks with Ryan LaMarre instead of Estevan Florial

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BALTIMORE — The Yankees will be without Aaron Hicks for at least another week with the center fielder on the 10-day IL with a torn sheath in his left wrist, but prospect Estevan Florial is not yet an option to replace him.

Florial was just promoted to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Friday and needs to spend at least 72 hours there before he’s eligible to be put on the major league roster.

The Yankees may not have gone with Florial anyway, as they are looking for him to get reps, but he will be in play at some point, especially since he’s on the 40-man roster.

In the immediate aftermath of putting Hicks on the IL, Ryan LaMarre was recalled from SWB prior to Sunday’s game against the Orioles at Camden Yards and he started in center.

Aaron Boone said Saturday the righty-hitting LaMarre would be in a platoon situation with Brett Gardner and Gardner was “gonna be in there a lot.”

Florial could get called up at some point. He’s hit well in the minors so far this season.

“We want him to play and continue to gain experience,” Boone said. “We know his ceiling, but looking at the situation we’re in in 2021, with the things going on, being on [the 40-man] roster, he’s in play. That said, we have to strike the balance of, we want him to play and develop, but also it’s a situation if we feel like we need it or he can help us, we’ll consider that.”

Hicks is set to return to New York, but Boone didn’t think he was expected to have any more tests.

LaMarre, Boone said, could play all three outfield positions. The 32-year-old last played in the majors in 2019, when he had 26 plate appearances with the Twins.

Of course, the Yankees had Mike Tauchman, who also played all three outfield spots, but traded him to the Giants on April 27 for left-hander Wandy Peralta.

“We were in a situation where Tauchman wasn’t getting a lot of playing time,” Boone said of the trade. “But we also understood who we had in Mike Tauchman. We — and the industry — really valued him as a player. There wasn’t the playing time we would have liked [for Tauchman] early on, but [it’s also about] how we evaluated Peralta. He’s come in and been a key part of our bullpen since we got him. You’ve go to give up quality to receive quality. Nothing more than that.”

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