Earlier, Major League Baseball announced the Franchise Four (hashtag), a contest where fans vote for the four players they feel best represent their franchise throughout history.
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There are three pretty clear favorites but the fourth selection is hotly contested amongst Rockies fans. Is it Matt Holliday? He has hit .308 over his career so far and had one of the best seasons in franchise history in 2007 (a season in which he was robbed of the MVP) and he still holds one of the most iconic moments in Rockies history in Game 163 in which he absolutely, definitely touched the plate to score the winning run.
Or is it Vinny Castilla? Fan favorite and member of the 1995 Blake Street Bombers that took over Denver and sent the Rockies to their very first playoff appearance, or is it his teammate Andres Galarraga? The Big Cat was one of the best players in Rockies history and his career home run total sitting at 399 is one of the most heartbreaking stats in sports.
For what it’s worth in all this, here are my Franchise Four (hashtag).
He was pretty good.
Just a career .316 hitter that is probably going to be the team record holder in doubles for a very long time, Helton is the first Rockie with a real legitimate chance at the hall of fame.
Also, he may have played a part in bringing Peyton Manning to Denver.
Also, his goatee has magical powers.
A career .313 hitter, Larry is best known for being the Rockies loan MVP award winner in 1997 and also just being really stupid good at hitting the baseball. He won three batting titles in Colorado and was a fan favorite. He’s the first all-time great in Rockies history and it’s a shame the team could only get him to the playoffs once and it’s an even bigger shame that the voters stacked the Hall of Fame ballot so heavy that he won’t even smell an induction.
33 was my first favorite player and you can never forget that.
Despite all the injuries, we may be seeing the greatest player in franchise history play out before our eyes in Tulo. A lot of dumb fans want to tell you the Rockies should trade him, that he sucks and is always hurt. Don’t listen to dumb fans, they are dumb.
Tulowitzki is arguably the second best position player in the entire freaking sport when he’s healthy and there’s no comparison to any other shortstop in baseball. The ones that can hit can’t field, and the ones that can field can’t hit. Tulo can do both and he does them both at a league elite level. I talk about Tulo the same way I talk about girls I was infatuated with, the way Jim Gaffigan talks about nachos, the way Dick Monfort talks about money.
We idolize Tulo because of how good he is, I won’t get up if there’s a chance I’ll miss a Tulo AB. It’s like when Aladdin took Jasmine on the magic carpet in that movie and you could just know, even as a kid, this was a special moment. That’s what it is like watching Tulowitzki play shortstop for the Rockies, he is showing us the world. Shining, shimmering, splendid.
Before you jump in the comments and demand answers, bear with me. Fuentes may not be the best choice for fourth, but I believe he deserves a vote. From 2005-2007 he was the best reliever the Rockies have ever had. He put in borderline elite seasons pitching half of his games in Coors Field. For all that I praise Huston Street for the great work he did from 09 and beyond, Fuentes’ three seasons during the Rockies rise from irrelevance are not to be ignored.
A reliever is only as good as his last appearance though, so fans skip him, they get mad when you bring him up.
For all the love we show Adam Ottavino (deserved), let’s not forget the guy that helped us get to a World Series in Brian Fuentes. The bullpen in the playoffs anchored by Fuentes and Manny Corpas was absolutely maniacal, it wasn’t even fair once the Rockies got a lead. Had the Indians closed out the Red Sox in 2007, history may have been written differently.
Tweet at me your Franchise Four (hashtag) and I promise not to laugh.