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If the Colorado Avalanche played baseball, here's how their starting nine would shake out

Mile High Hockey gives Purple Row a look at how the Colorado Avalanche would look if they were actually a baseball team.

Gabriel Landeskog would be the Avs' Carlos Gonzalez.
Gabriel Landeskog would be the Avs' Carlos Gonzalez.
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

On the morning of April 26th 2016, the North American Aerospace Defense Command detected an incoming meteor from outer space. Before they could scramble Ben Affleck and Bruce Willis to fly up and destroy it, the intergalactic rock fell to earth and crushed the entire Colorado Rockies 25-man roster - which was devastating, considering their surprising 17-3 start.

Richard L. Monfort, from comfort of his Greeley ranch, was inconsolable. "Mon dieu!" he exclaimed (because in this exercise, Dick's a polyglot). "However will we field a team tomorrow against the Pirates?" His brother, Charlie, sat up from the adjacent deck chair, slurped the bottom of his fifth Mai Tai, and offered, "How ‘bout we call up the AAA team?" "Great idea!" exclaimed Dick as he dialed someone on his phone. But when the voice on the other end picked up, his face grew even more concerned. "What do you mean they're all dead too?! Meteors also fell in Albuquerque, Hartford, Modesto, Asheville, and Boise?! Unbelievable!"

Dick slumped helplessly in his chair and they didn't speak for a number of minutes. Then Charlie, ever the optimist, got a second idea: "Hey, about those guys who played at the stadium in February?"

Dick looked up his brother incredulously, "Charlie, those were hockey players. They probably don't know a bat from a can of chew."

"But what choice do we have," implored the younger brother as he reached to pour another delicious tropical drink, Plus, I heard they're free after getting eliminated by the LA Kings last week. I heard Walt survived, he can put a team together!"

And put a team together, he would. The lineup card would be withheld from the public until game time, but Thomas Harding, citing a very reliable source, reported it would look like this:

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Meet your 2016 Hockey Rockies!

Matt Duchene - Shortstop

Blessed by the hockey gods with the smoothest of hands and the fleetest of feet, the 24-year old All-Star Duchene would be a natural defensive shortstop, making spectacular Andrelton Simmons-like plays in the hole but with a more effective bat. Duchene leads all regularly contributing Avalanche in shooting percentage, which Weiss concludes will naturally translate to on-base percentage.

Nathan MacKinnon - Left Field

In the two-hole is a rising star for the Avalanche. 20-year old MacKinnon was a No. 1 overall draft pick in 2013 and is currently the team's second leading scorer. Built like Mike Trout, and possessing an astonishing amount of skill in every area, he's hockey's version of a true five-tool player. Weiss will maximize his at-bats with the traffic Duchene generates.

Gabriel Landeskog - Right Field

The captain of the Avalanche isn't the team's fastest player, nor its leading scorer. But he is the most powerful, makes high-percentage plays, and is athletic enough to cover Colorado short right-field porch. The 22-year old Swede would be a perfect middle-of-the-order bat to drive in runs.

Jarome Iginla - First Base

With 604 goals 1,257 points, Iginla is a lock for the NHL Hall of Fame. Playing most of his 20-year career for the Calgary Flames, he's been a superlative scoring talent during the NHL's equivalent of the "Dead Ball Era." Unfortunately, at 38-years old, he's near the end of his run and it's painfully obvious at times. He's the Avalanche's "2013 Todd Helton" - cleanup hitter really by reputation alone, yet still makes enough plays to cover other age-related deficiencies.

Erik Johnson - Third Base

At 6'4" and 232 pounds, Johnson is an enormous physical presence and the best player on the Avalanche blue line, yet he's also an incredible skater and a major contributing factor to the offense. Weiss believes he will be perfect on the hot corner and a Matt Holliday-in-his-prime caliber bat from the right side.

Carl Soderberg - Second Base

Another big Swede. Signed this offseason from Boston, Soderberg is a solid player who does all the little things really well. But he is also very quietly third on the team in scoring. Basically, he's the Avalanche's DJ LeMahieu and therefore the second baseman on the new Rockies.

Semyon Varlamov - Catcher

Fans sick of passed balls will be overjoyed to watch Varlamov behind the plate. When healthy, he is one of the best goaltenders in the NHL and will stop even the nastiest of splitters in the dirt with an array of butterfly saves. Only trouble? Varly doesn't play the puck, and I imagine he isn't any good at throwing out baserunners either.

Francois Beauchemin - Pitcher

That's right, Weiss will be batting the pitcher eighth! But not only will the crafty Beauchemin be the steadying presence on the mound that he is for the Avalanche defense, but I'm guessing the veteran offseason free agent signing also has a little 2009 Jason Marquis in his bat. The team has younger prospects that will take his place in the coming years, but he's a solid option in the meantime.

Tyson Barrie - Center Field

One of the best scoring defensemen in the NHL, Barrie breaks the mold with diminutive size and blinding speed. At Coors Field, he'll cover its enormous center field unlike anyone we've seen since 2002 Juan Pierre. On offense, he has as much upside as anyone, but still makes enough mistakes where you don't want him at the top of your lineup yet. Weiss sticks him ninth in the order to maximize baserunners in front of MacKinnon.

Filling out the rest of the bench

The flexible John Mitchell and Blake Comeau are your utility infielder and fourth outfielder respectively. Team enforcer, Cody McLeod, is without a doubt the eccentric and wild closer (ala Brian Wilson). If the recently departed Ryan O'Reilly is the team's Troy Tulowitzki, that makes Nikita Zadorov their Jeff Hoffman, Mikhail Grigorenko their Miguel Castro, and JT Compher their Jesus Tinoco. Mikko Rantanen will be the David Dahl or Trevor Story fans will be clamor to bring up all year long. And the rest of the team? One big, dysfunctional bullpen! I smell playoffs!

Editor's note: Thanks to Ethan Fisher from Mile High Hockey for giving us a funny look into the Avalanche ahead of Saturday night's Stadium Series match up between the Avs and Red Wings at Coors Field. Tomorrow, we'll have a game preview up for you, too.