Troy Tulowitzki will not be a full-time shortstop for his entire career. It is just a matter of whether he transitions to a part-time/designated hitter role in the twilight of his career or whether he makes a switch at a younger age as a concession to his unfortunate history with injuries.
When it comes to the latter option, Tulo won’t have it. He told the Denver Post as much on Friday:
“No, I won’t move. I will retire before I move.”
“No. It’s just who I am, it’s what I do, it’s what I have dreamed of as a kid. It’s all I know and it’s all I’ve ever worked for. So I guess when you have a dream and you accomplish it and someone tries to take it away from you … it wouldn’t be worth it for me to try and move somewhere else.”
You can either admire his determination and find it within yourself to still believe he can return and stay healthy while contorting, twisting, leaping, and diving at shortstop, or you can roll your eyes at the big guy with a history of hip, thigh, and groin injuries stubbornly thinking that he will somehow avoid further injuries at short as he plays into his 30′s.
Either way, here are three things to look for in response to these statements from Tulowitzki.
1. Tulo Venom
Goes without saying, but boy, for one reason or another Troy Tulowitzki makes people mad. These quotes will make people mad.
2. A race to interview Cal Ripken, Jr.
The Hall of Famer was a tall shortstop who did switch to third base. You better believe beat reporters and writers will be trying to get in touch with him to see if he has advice for Tulowitzki in light of his stubborn comments.
3. Another chip on Tulo’s shoulder
Consider this third item my best attempt to see these quotes as a positive. Tulo entered 2014 on an absolute mission to prove himself. When he was on the field, he was putting together an incredible, possibly historic season on offense and on defense. Unfortunately he was unable to stay healthy, with this hip injury ending his season.
If you are still willing to bet on Tulo as a franchise guy, holding out a sliver of hope that he can stay healthy in the future, then you can earmark this day and come back to it when Tulo shows up with even more determination to stay on the field and perform at an MVP level.
That is the way to find a positive in this, methinks. To hope that it drives him even more and to buy into that as a reason for hope in seasons to come.
In the end, though, when it comes to Tulo’s refusal to switch positions….yea, it’s probably just going to make people mad.