Colorado Rockies: The best switch-hitters in franchise history
By Kevin Henry
Who were the best switch hitters in the history of the Colorado Rockies? Let’s take a look at the numbers.
There is a surprising name at the top of the list of switch hitters in Colorado Rockies history
Depending on which statistical metric you choose to use, Dexter Fowler and Neifi Perez serve as the all-time switch-hitting kings of the Rockies.
Surprised by Perez being so high on the list? Sure, he is known for being the last Rockies player to play in all 162 games (turning the feat in both 1998 and 2000), and he also was the first-ever amateur free agent signing by the franchise. But did you also know that Perez has the most home runs of any switch hitter in Rockies history? In his six seasons in Colorado, Perez totaled 43 homers. Twelve of those came during a 1999 season where Perez had 27 doubles, an MLB-leading 11 triples, and 12 homers. That’s 278 total bases, a number he equaled the following season with 39 doubles, 11 triples, and 10 home runs.
On July 25, 1998, Perez went 4-for-4 from the leadoff spot, logging a cycle to lead the Rockies to a 5-2 win over the St. Louis Cardinals.
In the switch-hitting home run category, Fowler sits three behind Perez in Colorado history, logging 40 long balls. Through his six seasons in a Rockies uniform, Fowler also ranks behind Perez in most categories except triples (Fowler’s 53 tops the 49 from Perez) as well as OPS (Fowler posted a .788 while Perez was at .723).
It’s interesting to note that Fowler and Perez both played six seasons in Colorado and Fowler appeared in just one less game (688 to 687) during his time with the Rockies. However, Perez totaled 301 more plate appearances despite the minuscule margin in games played.
Only four other switch hitters have hit 10 or more home runs in a Rockies uniform. Greg Norton leads that list with 26 followed by Walt Weiss (14), Jason Bates (12), and JD Closser and Howard Johnson (10 each).