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Gardenhire pleased with Hicks' progress

Gardenhire pleased with Hicks' progress

MINNEAPOLIS -- Twins manager Ron Gardenhire has liked what he's seen from center fielder Aaron Hicks since meeting with him on Tuesday about being more prepared for his at-bats.

Hicks had a walkoff RBI single on Thursday against the Red Sox and went a combined 3-for-6 with a double and a walk against the Mariners on Friday and Saturday.

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Hicks entered Sunday still hitting just .191 on the season, but his .330 on-base percentage ranks slightly above average. The average on-base percentage in the Majors is .317 this season. Hicks has done it with an impressive walk rate, as he's walking in 17.4 percent of his plate appearances.

Gardenhire said Hicks took Tuesday's meeting to heart, and the young outfielder has been doing early work on the field and in the batting cages to get his swing right.

"You can already see it in him -- he's out working early and has a bat in his hand going to hit all the time in the cages," Gardenhire said. "He's doing what he's supposed to do. He's here early and working to be a baseball player. That's all we wanted from him and he's doing it. He's doing well."

Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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