Due to the cancellation of the NCAA Men’s and Women’s Basketball Tournaments, Purple Row is hosting our own Rockies Madness Tournament this year. We selected the 36 best players in Rockies history in order to figure out who the best player is in franchise history. We sorted them into four regions in order to force the most interesting matchups: Infielders, Outfielders, Mile High (for relievers and starting pitchers who began their career before the humidor), and Humidor (for starters who began their career after the humidor). All stats are from Baseball-Reference.
Today is the Elite 8 matchup in the Outfielder Region: No. 1 Larry Walker vs. No. 2 Carlos González.
Larry Walker, Outfielder
Walker Rockies Career Stats
- Top 10 NL MVP (1995-7th, 1997-1st)
- 5x Gold Glove (1997, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2002)
- 2x Silver Slugger (1997, 1999)
- 4x All-Star (1997, 1998, 1999, 2001)
- MLB Hall of Famer (Class of 2020)
- From 1997 to 1999, Larry Walker led baseball with a .451 on-base percentage.
- Walker is the first player to be enshrined into the Hall of Fame with a Rockies cap.
- Walker is the only player in Rockies history to win the National League Most Valuable Player Award.
- In his Rockies debut (it was also the inaugural game of Coors Field) on April 26, 1995, Walker doubled three times, one of which tied the score in the ninth inning. The game resulted in an 11−9 win after going into extras.
Why You Should Vote for Him
It’s easy to see why Larry Walker was a #1 seed in the Outfielder Region. Walker, is, arguably, the best player in Rockies history and and now a much-deserved (soon-to-be) Hall of Fame member. He is the only Rockie ever to win the National League Most Valuable Player Award, and from 1997-1999, led baseball with a .451 OBP. As former teammate Jeff Huson told Drew Goodman, “He was one of the top five players that I ever played with . . . . He and Roberto Alomar and Ken Griffey Jr.—they could do whatever they wanted whenever they wanted to—and with ease.”
Carlos González, Outfielder
González Rockies Career Stats
- 3rd place NL MVP (2010)
- 3x Gold Glove (2010, 2012, 2013)
- 2x Silver Slugger (2010, 2015)
- 3x All-Star (2012, 2013, 2016)
• In 2010, which was his first full season in the majors, CarGo won the NL batting crown with a .336 average. He beat runner up Joey Votto (.324) and finished the year with 34 homers, 26 stolen bases, and 117 RBI, even though he was leadoff hitter in 44 games.
• On July 31, 2010, CarGo hit a walk-off homer to complete the cycle and to beat the Cubs 6-5. (Side note: He was sick that day and not even supposed to play, but agreed to manager Jim Tracy’s pleas to play anyway. His walkoff flew 462 feet to the third deck in right field.)
• Managers, TV and radio commentators, fans, and other players often credit González for having the “sweetest swing” in baseball. Growing up in Venezuela, CarGo would unscrew handles from brooms and use them as makeshift bats. The practice paid off as David Ortiz praised CarGo’s swing this way: “Every time I see him do what he does, it gives me goose bumps. This guy has the sweetest, most beautiful swing from a left-hander. What a sexy swing.”
• CarGo finished his career with the Rockies with the second most games played (1,247), third in runs (769), hits (1,330), and doubles (277), and fourth in RBI (749), homers (227), and stolen bases (118).
Why You Should Vote for Him
Rockies fans love Carlos González—and with good reason. In his first full season in the majors, CarGo hit a .336 average, winning the National League batting crown. CarGo finished his career with the Rockies in 2018, he was second most In games played (1,247), third in runs (769), hits (1,330), and doubles (277), and fourth in RBI (749), homers (227), and stolen bases (118). Plus, his swing remains a thing of breath-taking power and beauty. As Drew Goodman wrote in If These Walls Could Talk, “Carlos González is an artist.”
Outfielder Region: Elite 8, Round 2
This poll is closed
No. 1 Larry Walker, OF
No. 2 Carlos González, OF