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TODD HELTON’S CAREER HAS COME TO AN END
Thu, 09 Aug 2012 02:30 AM EDT

The worst season of Todd Helton’s career is over.

The Rockies said their 1st baseman and clubhouse leader will go through arthroscopic surgery to repair a torn labrum in his right hip.

“I assume the world of this man,” Chief Jim Tracy claimed before the start of a 3-game series in L.A. “I’ve been privileged over the course of 11 years to have managed some very special people. This man is potentially as good a competitor as I have ever been around.”

The Colorado Rockies placed Helton on the 15-day DL and reinstated infielder Chris Nelson from the 15-day disabled list. Nelson, who missed 17 games because of an unsteady heartbeat, was in the starting line at 2nd base and batting 7th.

“It’s sad, man,” Nelson said. “The guy brings a large amount of experience, with the batting titles and the Gold Gloves. If you have any kind of questions, you just stop over at his locker and ask him, and he’ll give you his truthful viewpoint. That’s one of the nice things about him. NFL odds

A career .320 hitter, Helton batted just .238 this season, by a long way the lowest average of his 15-year career in the majors. He had seven homers and 37 RBIs.

Helton has been bothered by a sore hip since early June, which has influenced his mechanics. He struggled moving to his right on ground balls and lifting his right leg at the plate, messing up his timing. But his colleagues have seen firsthand how much he would like to be in the lineup, and those abilities in leadership only echo what Tracy has been saying about him during the 4 seasons they’ve been together.

“I’ll take it a step further,” Tracy said. “How about the impact he has had on the game? Todd’s leadership comes in a little bit different vein. It comes by example. Todd’s leadership is a bunch of young players taking a look at him during 15 years and saying: “There he is again. He’s out there today, and he’s a little bit sore. But he would like in there.’ That’s who he is. That’s why you gain the respect for a player like this.”

Helton, who turns 39 years old on August 20, missed 12 games in July because of his hurt hip. He informed he plans on playing next season, the last year of his agreement. And his manager isn’t betting against it.

“I think Todd has every intentions of playing next year,” Tracy declared. “He had a bad year in 2010 when he was dealing with a back issue, and there were a large amount of questions on how much gas Todd Helton had left in his tank. And I can tell you, it wasn’t greatly appreciated. So Todd showed up on a mission in 2011 and hit over .300.

“So questioning Todd Helton’s bounce-back capability is not something that I spend a ton of time doing, because the preparation and commitment to do so will be there. I have seen it with my own eyes. And if that is his intention, I guarantee you he’ll follow through with it.”


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