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Todd Helton

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Full Name: Todd Lynn Helton Primary Position: 1B
Height/Weight: 6'2"/210 First Game: August 2, 1997
Birthdate: August 20, 1973 MLB Experience: 11 years
Birthplace: Knoxville, Tennessee
Bat/Throw: Left/Left


Biography

Todd Lynn Helton (born August 20, 1973 in Knoxville, Tennessee) is a Major League Baseball first baseman who has played for the Colorado Rockies since the 1997 season. He bats and throws left-handed. Entering the 2006 season, he had the highest career batting average of any active player.

Early career

Todd Helton was drafted in the 1st round 8th overall in the 1995 by the Colorado Rockies. Todd spent the next few years playing for the New Haven Ravens, AA and Colorado Springs Sky Sox AAA. Helton dominated the minors and was soon called up on August 2, 1997.

Major League Career

After the end of the 1997 season he hit .280/.337/.484, and 5 home runs. When Andrés Galarraga went to the Atlanta Braves in 1998, Helton proved to be a worthy replacement, hitting .315/.380/.530, 25 home runs, and 97 RBI while finishing second in the NL Rookie Of The Year race. In 1999 Helton carried the Rockies on his back by hitting .320/.395/.587, 35 home runs, and 113 RBI, and drawing 68 walks. They would go on to finish an unimpressive 72-90. Since then, he has consistently remained Colorado's best hitter.

In 2000, Helton enjoyed his best season, leading the National League hitters in batting average (.372) and also winning the overall major league batting title over the American League leadingRed Sox shortstop Nomar Garciaparra. In 2000 Helton led the major leagues in RBI (147), hits (216), doubles (59), total bases (405), on base percentage (.463), slugging average (.698) and OPS (1.162). He was also considered for the MVP award (5th). The next season, 2001, was another impressive one for Helton, who had a career high 49 home runs and 146 RBI, in addition to averaging .336/.432/.685 and drawing 98 walks. The 49 home runs tied his teammate Larry Walker for the most home runs ever by a Colorado Rockies player in a single season. Helton was a top candidate for MVP, but was overshadowed by Sammy Sosa and Barry Bonds, and the fact that he plays half his games at hitter friendly Coors Field.

During the 2005 season Helton was in the biggest slump in his career in offensive categories. Helton would bounce back to hit .383 (92-for-240) over final 69 games beginning July 1, highest average in the majors in that span, 24 points higher than the next closest batter (Cleveland's Victor Martinez, .359)...hit .367 (76-for-207) after the All-Star break, In 2005 Todd injured his left calf muscle forcing him out of play from July 26 to August 9. It was the first time Helton was ever on the disabled list. Todd Helton has played his entire career in Colorado. This is a rare feat that was popular past with players such as Cal Ripken, Tony Gwynn, Mike Schmidt, Carl Yastrzemski, Robin Yount, Johnny Bench, George Brett, Edgar Martinez and many others . Todd will be a free agent after the 2011 season.

With his glove, Helton is solid at first base. No active first baseman, and few former first baseman, can match his skills at first base. A winner of three Gold Glove Awards (2001, 2002, 2004), he looks smooth around the bag and makes plays that most first basemen would not. However, his arm is average, though as a first baseman, he is not often required to make critical throws. He currently has the highest batting average (.337) among all active players as of 2006.

As of the start of the 2006 season, Helton holds the Colorado Rockies club records for Hits (1535), Home runs (271), Doubles (373), Walks (773),Runs scored (924), RBIs (915), On-Base Percentage (.443), Games Played (1279), Total bases (2769), and other categories.


Scouting Report

Statistics

Batting Stats

Year Team G AB R H HR RBI AVG OBP SLG 2B 3B BB SO HBP SH SB IBB GDP
1997 COL N 35 93 13 26 5 11 .280 .337 .484 2 1 8 11 0 0 0 0 1
1998 COL N 152 530 78 167 25 97 .315 .380 .530 37 1 53 54 6 1 3 5 15
1999 COL N 159 578 114 185 35 113 .320 .395 .587 39 5 68 77 6 0 7 6 14
2000 COL N 160 580 138 216 42 147 .372 .463 .698 59 2 103 61 4 0 5 22 12
2001 COL N 159 587 132 197 49 146 .336 .432 .685 54 2 98 104 5 1 7 15 14
2002 COL N 156 553 107 182 30 109 .329 .429 .577 39 4 99 91 5 0 5 21 10
2003 COL N 160 583 135 209 33 117 .358 .458 .630 49 5 111 72 2 0 0 21 19
2004 COL N 154 547 115 190 32 96 .347 .469 .620 49 2 127 72 3 0 3 19 12
2005 COL N 144 509 92 163 20 79 .320 .445 .534 45 2 106 80 9 1 3 22 14
2006 COL N 145 546 94 165 15 81 .302 .404 .476 40 5 91 64 6 0 3 15 10
2007 COL N 154 557 86 178 17 91 .320 .434 .494 42 2 116 74 2 0 3 16 15
Total 1578 5663 1104 1878 303 1087 .332 .430 .583 455 31 980 760 48 3 36 162 136

Fielding Stats

Year Team POS G GS INN PO A ERR DP TP PB SB CS PkO AVG
1997 COL N 1B 8 7 57 68 10 0 7 0 0 0 0 0 1.000
1997 COL N OF 15 14 109.2 16 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1.000
1997 COL N RF 2 2 16 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1.000
1997 COL N LF 13 12 93.2 14 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1.000
1998 COL N 1B 146 134 1208 1164 146 7 156 0 0 0 0 0 .995
1999 COL N 1B 156 148 1310 1243 103 9 152 0 0 0 0 0 .993
2000 COL N 1B 160 156 1349 1326 149 7 142 0 0 0 0 0 .995
2001 COL N 1B 157 157 1370 1306 119 2 139 0 0 0 0 0 .999
2002 COL N 1B 156 155 1342 1358 112 7 138 0 0 0 0 0 .995
2003 COL N 1B 159 159 1369 1418 156 11 149 1 0 0 0 0 .993
2004 COL N 1B 153 151 1320.2 1356 144 4 130 0 0 0 0 0 .997
2005 COL N 1B 144 142 1229.2 1237 119 5 136 0 0 0 0 0 .996
2006 COL N 1B 145 145 1272.1 1367 87 4 156 0 0 0 0 0 .997
2007 COL N 1B 153 152 1337 1448 95 2 153 0 0 0 0 0 .999
2007 COL N DH 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000
Total RF 2 2 16 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1.000
Total LF 13 12 93.2 14 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1.000
Total OF 15 14 109.2 16 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1.000
Total DH 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000
Total 1B 1537 1506 13164.2 13291 1240 58 1458 1 0 0 0 0 .996

Transactions

  • Selected by San Diego Padres in the 2nd round of the free-agent draft - did not sign (June 1, 1992).
  • Selected by Colorado Rockies in the 1st round (8th pick overall) of the free-agent draft (June 1, 1995 - signed July 1, 1995).

Trivia

  • Helton wears number 17 in tribute to Mark Grace.
  • Helton was the backup quarterback to Peyton Manning, while at the University of Tennessee.
  • Not only was Helton a great ballplayer in high school, but he also graduated with a 3.97 grade point average.
  • Helton is the only player in MLB history to have 100-plus extra base hits in consecutive seasons: 103 in 2000, and 105 in 2001. The only others to do it twice in their careers, but not consecutively, were Lou Gehrig [1927 (117), 1930 (100)] and Chuck Klein [1930 (107), 1932 (103)].
  • Helton is one of only four players in MLB history (Klein in 1929 and 1930, Jimmie Foxx in 1932 and 1933, along with Gehrig in 1930 and 1931) to have reached 400 total bases in consecutive seasons (405 in 2000, 402 in 2001). Gehrig reached 400 total bases in four seasons (1927, 1930, 1931, 1934), and Klein did so once more (1932). The other players to reach 400 total bases twice in a career, but not consecutively, were Babe Ruth (1921, 1927), Rogers Hornsby (1922, 1929) and Sammy Sosa (1998, 2001).
  • Helton is one of only five players in MLB history (the first ever in the National League) to have at least 200 hits, 40 home runs, 100 RBI, 100 runs, 100 extra-base hits and 100 walks in one season (2000).[6] The others to do so were Babe Ruth (1921), Lou Gehrig (1927, 1930), Jimmie Foxx (1932) and Hank Greenberg (1937).
  • Helton is the only player in MLB history to hit 35 or more doubles in at least 10 consecutive seasons (1998–2007).


See also

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