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 to determine the best player in franchise history. We sorted them into four regions 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.
We have arrived to the Final Four of Rockies Madness, with the winners of the Humidor, Mile High, Infielder and Outfielder regions facing off. A semifinal matchup features the winner of the Infielder region, Todd Helton, taking on the winner of the Humidor region, Jorge De La Rosa.
Todd Helton, First Baseman
Helton Rockies Career Stats
- 5x All-Star (2000-2004)
- 4x Silver Slugger (2000-2003)
- 3x Gold Glove (2001, 2002, 2004)
- 2000 NL Batting Champion
- Helton spent all 17 seasons of his MLB career in Colorado
- He is the all-time Rockies leader for hits (2,159), home runs (369), doubles (592), walks (1,335), runs scored (1,401), and RBI’s (1,406).
- Helton hit his final home run on September 25, 2013 in his final game at Coors Field.
- With 592 doubles, Helton is 19th on MLB’s all-time list. He is 81st in home runs with 369.
- He played 2,247 games with the Rockies, the most in franchise history. Carlos Gonzalez is second with 1,000 fewer games.
- Helton made three starts as quarterback for the University of Tennessee football team. He was then sidelined due to a knee injury, and Denver legend Peyton Manning took over.
- He is the namesake for the ‘Helton Burger Shack’ located under the main scoreboard at Coors Field.
Brief Career Overview
Tennessee native Todd Helton was the eighth overall pick in the 1995 MLB Draft, starting a 19-year career within the Colorado Rockies organization. He made his debut two years later, and remained a staple in the Rockies lineup until his retirement in 2013. He was the starting first basemen for the duration of his Rockies tenure after his rookie year, recording over 500 at-bats in 11 of his 17 seasons. He caught the final out of the 2007 NLCS to send the Rockies to the World Series, promptly raising his fists to the sky in one of the most iconic moments in franchise history. His number was retired at Coors Field on August 17, 2014, and in his second year of Hall of Fame voting appeared on 29.2 percent of ballots.
Jorge De La Rosa, Starting Pitcher
De La Rosa Rockies Career Stats
- De La Rosa has the most pitching wins in Rockies history (86)
- He has the third highest bWAR among Rockies all-time pitchers behind Ubaldo Jimenez and Aaron Cook
- He is the all-time strikeout leader for the Rockies with 985; second-place Ubaldo Jimenez has 200 less.
- His MLB career began August 14, 2004 with the Milwaukee Brewers. He spent time with five different franchises over his 15-year career
- De La Rosa has appeared in three career postseason games, two of them against the Rockies.
- He narrowly beat out Ubaldo Jiménez in the Elite Eight round of Rockies Madness — only six votes separated them.
Brief Career Overview
Jorge De La Rosa grew up in Mexico and signed with the Arizona Diamondbacks as an amateur free agent in 1998; he was 17. He spent five years under Diamondbacks control until being traded to the Milwaukee Brewers, where he debuted in a big league uniform on August 14, 2004. He remained in Milwaukee for parts of three seasons, until being dealt to Kansas City for his next two. His tenure in Colorado began in 2008, the first year of what would become a nine-year body of work sending him to the mound for exactly 200 starts in a Rockies uniform (second only to Aaron Cook with 206). His time with the Rockies ended after 2016, when he signed with the Arizona Diamondbacks for 2017 and made 65 appearances, all in relief. He pitched for both the Diamondbacks and the Chicago Cubs in 2018, and despite signing again with Colorado in 2019, he suffered an oblique injury and hasn't appeared in an MLB game since his 2018 work with the Cubs.
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Final Four, Game 1
This poll is closed
No. 1 Todd Helton, 1B
No. 3 Jorge De La Rosa, LHP