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Thursday Rockpile: What to do about Helton?

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Walt Weiss tells the Denver Post he is not worried about Todd Helton's slow start. Well, that makes one of us.


After the first infuriating series of the 2013 season, now may be a good time to look forward instead of back. With only a few games on the ledger it's hard not to take the Little League-like performance from the boys in purple over the past few days and go crazy. It almost certainly feels worse right now than it actually is. A 10-0 embarrassment is still just 1 game of 162 in L column.

Walt Weiss tells the Denver Post he is not worried about Todd Helton's slow start. Well, that makes one of us. It's definitely still a small sample size for the greatest hitter in the history of the franchise, but Helton's hands and bat speed look much slower this year and this is evidenced by the high number of weak contact outs he has generated. At this point to me though, and I love Todd Helton irrationally, is to put Eric Young Jr. in right field and have Michael Cuddyer play first.

It may be too early in the season for permanent line-up changes, maybe way uncool to do to a guy on his goodbye tour, but for the first time in a very long time, the Colorado Rockies are better without Todd Helton in the line-up. If they leave him in they should bat him 8th, this may help extend the skills he still has going for him and maybe even help the Rockies turn the line-up over more often.

So, it's a day off then a series in San Diego to attempt to salvage this road trip. As is often the case, the success of the Rockies season will hang largely on their ability to win games in California. Let's hope the bats reignite, the bullpen recoups, and the defense calms down starting tomorrow in Sand Diego.

The Links:

Enos Sarris of Fangraphs has an excellent interview with and break down of Dexter Fowler. I found the discussion on Dex's decision to stick with switch hitting both fascinating and encouraging. Also this snippet:

"since 1960, the number of guys with a BABIP over .350 and a walk rate over 11.5 with more than 2000 plate appearances is two. Joey Votto and Dexter Fowler. "

The New York Daily News has an interesting piece about Jason Giambi's role as resident wiseman of the Cleveland Indians in the aftermath of losing out on the Colorado Rockies manager position. He still calls the opportunity to even interview for the job here "a gift." And while I am mighty glad he is off the roster, I wish him nothing but the best in his future endeavors and wouldn't mind eventually seeing him back here in some capacity.

An oral history of the Sandlot from baseball prospectus? Why not. Fun and interesting read.

Wondering what the heck when wrong with Ubaldo Jimenez? This Beyond the Boxscore article endeavors to find out with Pitch F/X data.