The Colorado Rockies are porous in 2021. With a 63-76 record, manager Bud Black’s club is playing for pride. Even though the season has gone south, there have been a few bright spots. Former outfielder Larry Walker is in Cooperstown. Another Rockies great could get the call next season in first baseman Todd Helton.
Todd Helton’s Journey To Colorado
Todd Helton began his journey to becoming the face of the Rockies in Knoxville, Tennessee. At the University of Tennessee, he was a two-sport star on the diamond and the gridiron. Unfortunately, Helton only appeared in 12 games on the gridiron before tearing his knee. Following the injury, he decided to focus on baseball. He hit .370 and set school records with 38 home runs and 238 RBIs. Following his time in Knoxville, Helton was drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the first round of the 1995 MLB draft.
Todd Helton Built A Hall Of Fame Resume
The “Toddfather” began his rookie campaign in 1998 and garnered a reputation as one of baseball’s most powerful hitters. One of the roadblocks Helton has faced on his journey to Cooperstown is his home ballpark. Half of his games came inside hitter-friendly Coors Field.
While Coors Field may hamper the former first baseman’s chances, there is the Walker factor. Like Helton, Larry Walker enjoyed success at Coors Field. In addition to seven Gold Gloves and three batting titles over four years, he was also named National League MVP in 1997. Walker helped to pave Helton’s way to the Hall with his induction this year. If he does get the call in 2022, Helton would join an exclusive list. He would be one of only 55 hall of famers that spent their entire career on one team.
2022 Is Todd Helton’s Year
The Colorado Rockies lost a potential hall of famer when they traded Nolan Arenado to the Cardinals in February. #17’s prospective induction has an opportunity to lessen the blow of Arenado’s departure. Helton showcased his strengths both at the plate and defensively. His 1.726 assists rank second in MLB history and his 2.038 double plays turned rank third. From 1998-2007, he averaged 154 games a year. His best season came in 2000 when he led the National League in numerous categories. His .372 batting average, 147 RBIs, and 216 hits were just a few of the impressive numbers he posted.
In 2021, the Rockies find themselves at a crossroads. An unruly fanbase is growing restless of a poor product on the field. If the “Toddfather” can secure a place in the Hall next year, it could go a long way for a franchise in flux. However, if Helton is passed on again, it will be another preverbal beating fans have to endure.
Todd Helton will go down as one of the greatest Rockies to don the purple and black. His achievements over 17 years as the face of the franchise is remarkable in itself. To excel on the field in the way Helton did is worthy of a player bust in New York. Cooperstown is a place that encapsulates greatness. It is time for the Baseball Writers’ Association of America to recognize Todd Lynn Helton as a hall of famer in 2022.
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