Ace of Base-ball: Colorado Rockies Shortstop Steals ‘The Sign’
Posted by Jen on May 23rd, 2014 • News
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Troy Tulowitzki responds to cheating accusations by walking out to Swedish group’s 1992 hit
Major-league baseball fans have had their eyes opened to Swedish pop group Ace of Base. Colorado Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki is off to a torrid start this season, batting an unheard-of .552 average in 19 games at the team’s Coors Field. He’s been so hot, in fact, that Mike Krukow, an announcer for the San Francisco Giants, this week accused the 29-year-old of stealing opposing teams’ signs.
Tulo’s response in the Rockies’ game yesterday (May 22) against the Giants was priceless. According to MLB.com, he used Ace of Base’s global 1992 smash “The Sign,” with its instantly catchy “I saw the sign” lyrical refrain, as his at-bat walk-up music. If we just got the song stuck in your head, you’re welcome.
It’s not the first creative use of a decades-old song by a baseball player this season: The Oakland A’s outfielder Josh Reddick famously comes out to George Michaels’ “Careless Whisper,” which has enough gooey saxophone for closing time in China. But Tulowitzki’s move is still an awesome display of chutzpah, and it definitely gets the point across better than some of our other relevant favorites, such as Prince’s “Sign ‘O’ the Times” or the blues staple “Born Under a Bad Sign.” (Stevie Wonder’s “Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours” might be better for autograph events.)
And hey, Tulo can always use Tesla/Five Man Electrical Band’s “Signs” when the Rockies meet the Giants again to make up Thursday’s game, which was suspended on account of rain and the threat of tornadoes. That’s right, tornadoes. Like hammer-wielding (or at least hook-wielding) Scandinavian gods, never undestimate the power of Ace of Base.
Posted by Jen on May 18th, 2014 • Site
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Thanks to Kimberly, we have a brand new site layout! As always, feedback is always appreciated!
Photos: Colorado vs. New York, Texas, Cincinnati & Kansas City (5/1 – 5/14)
I’ve just added game photos from the Mets, Rangers, Reds and Royals series into the gallery. Enjoy!
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > May 1, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > May 2, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > May 3, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > May 5, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > May 6, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > May 7, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > May 8, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > May 9, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > May 10, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > May 11, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > May 13, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > May 14, 2014
Photos: Rockies Magazine Scans
I’ve just added scans from the March, April, and May issues of Rockies Magazine into the gallery.
• Magazine Scans > Rockies Magazine > March 2014
• Magazine Scans > Rockies Magazine > April 2014
• Magazine Scans > Rockies Magazine > May 2014
The Colorado Rockies issue a “Tulo-Nado” warning
Posted by Jen on May 11th, 2014 • News
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Troy Tulowitzki has blown up. The All-Star is healthy and he’s back in full force. As amazing as his monstrous start has been, there’s someone overshadowing his .407/9/31 and that’s Nolan Arenado. The second-year third basemen appears to be blossoming into the player the Colorado Rockies organization expected. Setting the Colorado Rockies record for most consecutive games with a hit, 28 games, is just one reason you should be watching the Rockies right now.
The most explosive offense in baseball has bolstered the Rockies to a 22-15 record and they continue to nip at the heels of NL West leading San Francisco. Nolan Arenado, is just 23 years old and yet his offensive game is maturing right before our eyes. Known mostly for his wizardry at third-base, Nolan Arenado is hitting .322 with a team leading 12 doubles. During the streak, which broke the record held by fellow Rockie Michael Cuddyer, a 27-gamer from 2013, Arenado has hit .364 with 11 of his 12 doubles, four home runs, and 19 RBI.
While Arenado looks to push his streak into the thirties, Troy Tulowitzki is doing what a healthy Troy Tulowitzki should be do. Having already established himself as one of the best hitters in the game, Tulo’s 2014 start is the best of notable big-league career.
Perhaps Tulo has matured. After all, he his walking more and striking out less. Or is it that the presence of Carlos Gonzalez, the breakout of Nolan Arenado, and the always steady Michael Cuddyer have taken the pressure off Tulo. No longer does he need to be the only guy. No longer pressing, Tulo is not just looking for any pitch to hit, he’s looking for his pitch.
As a result, Troy Tulowitzki is pounding the ball. For opposing pitchers, there can’t be a lineup more intimidating than the Colorado Rockies right now. Of the six Rockies who have had more than 100 at-bats this season, four are hitting above .300. Led by Tulo and Arenado, the Rockies continue to light up scoreboards across the league.
Yes, Colorado is notorious for hot starts. But baseball continues to be the sport where randomness is the norm, and no one saw this kind of start for the Colorado Rockies or Tulo and Arenado. One thing is for certain, Rockies fans are being spoiled. Watching the future of the franchise blossom like Arenado is nothing short of exciting. Witnessing Troy Tulowitzki on an unprecedented tear is the sugar on top.
Something is happening in Colorado. Who can say how long it will last? All I know is if you’re not watching the Colorado Rockies right now, you’re missing out. As for baseball, there’s a “Tulo-nado” warning being issued throughout the league, and all opposing pitchers should be alarmed.
Source: iSports Web
What’s going on with Troy Tulowitzki?
Posted by Jen on May 8th, 2014 • News
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Rockies shortstop leads league with remarkable .421 batting average and .522 on-base percentage.
After three more hits on Tuesday night, Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki is now batting .421 on the season with a .522 on-base percentage and a .794 slugging — all of which lead the Majors. Through his first 32 games, Tulowitzki’s off to the best start of his excellent big-league career.
I’ve sung this song before: Early season baseball stats often isolate odd blips and make them seem more meaningful than they actually are. And so when a player enjoys a stretch as good as Tulo’s early in the season, I instinctively start poking around baseball-reference.com’s game logs to see if there’s any precedent.
Tulowitzki, after all, is a great hitter. And if he’s hit this well over any similarly long stretch of his career before, it could indicate that his special start to the season is more an embodiment of the randomness that dominates baseball than some real improvement.
As it turns out, Tulowitzki — for as good as he has been — has never had 32 games quite like these before. He’s had several stretches where he’s been nearly as good for about as long, like when he hit .404 with a .472 OBP and a .743 slugging from July 19 to Aug. 27 of 2011. And he had an incredible run over a much shorter timeframe late in the 2010 season, when he hit 14 homers in 16 games from Sept. 2 through Sept. 18.
But Tulowitzki’s early-season outburst represents, by almost any measure, the best 32-game stretch he has ever had. So what’s happening?
Tulo has been walking more and striking out less than he typically does, both promising signs. But looking at his plate discipline stats, it’s not clear that he’s chasing fewer pitches out of the zone or swinging and missing way less than he normally does. More than anything, it appears he’s getting fewer pitches to hit than usual, and remaining customarily patient — leading to more walks.
He’s certainly benefiting from some good luck, as would be expected of anyone maintaining a .422 batting average. Tulowitzki’s .419 batting average on balls in play is 99 points higher than his career norm, and likely to regress as the season continues.
But that rate, not to mention his massive ratio of homers to flyballs, also seems to reflect the way Tulowitzki is simply crushing the ball. His 27.4-percent line drive rate is by far the best of his career, and he’s popping out only about half as frequently as usual.
Of course, given the calendar it’s important not to jump to any conclusions — especially considering the unique home-field hitting environment in which the shortstop has flourished this season.
Tulowitzki has played his entire career after the Rockies began storing baseballs in a humidor to mitigate the effects of Denver’s dry air. And through the season’s first five weeks, the team is posting the type of gaudy offensive numbers it did in the late 1990s.
Of course, Tulowitzki’s responsible for a lot of that on his own. Maybe something strange is afoot in Colorado, or maybe the shortstop’s incredible start is merely the confluence of some good luck, good hitting and good health from an exceptional player in the prime of his career.
Source: USA Today
Troy Tulowitzki Is Already Running Away With The NL MVP Award
Posted by Jen on May 8th, 2014 • News
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Unless your name is Mike Trout, it’s not the easiest of tasks garnering positive attention if you play your home games in the western half of the United States. However, Troy Tulowitzki has stepped up and shown that getting that type of attention is absolutely no issue if you’re off to the type of start that he is. We’re only about to hit the midway point of the month of May, but Tulo is looking like the runaway favorite for the National League Most Valuable Player Award.
It’s been said all over, whether through the mainstream media or in the blogosphere: A healthy Troy Tulowitzki is as good a player as there is in Major League Baseball. It’s that health aspect that has held Tulo back, particularly in the last couple of years, including a 2012 campaign in which he only appeared in 47 games. But early on, the Colorado Rockies are in the middle of a division race in the National League West, with Tulo serving as the primary reason as to how/why.
Tulowitzki’s numbers, even early on, are absolutely absurd. He’s slashing .421/.522/.794/1.317 and has gone for a .374 ISO and a 242 wRC+. His strikeout rate is much lower than his career average, and his walk rate, up over 17 percent, is higher. His .419 BABIP certainly helps too. All of those numbers paint an incredible picture for his start, but those last two are absolutely stellar. Of course, they’ll come down as the sample size becomes larger.
A large part of what has made Tulowitzki so successful is playing his home games at Coors Field. He’s asserted his dominance at home in an absolutely ridiculous fashion to this point. He’s hitting .608 at Coors, and reaching base overall at a .677 clip. Even more ridiculous, he’s 18 for his last 21 with runners on base. He’s hitting .561 on the season with runners on overall, and .545 when they’re in scoring position.
Obviously those numbers are going to see a decline as the season wears on. Not only is it unreasonable to expect it, the fact that his road numbers leave a bit to be desired should help to level the playing field quite a bit. After all, he’s “only” OPSing .895 away from Coors Field.
Tulo’s WAR on the season is already at 3.3, setting him up to shatter the career mark he’s set in that department, which was a 5.9 back in 2010. He’s doing it with the bat and the glove as well, adding elite defense at a premium defensive position to the equation. His UZR per 150 innings is nearly 22 at this point.
Plain and simple, Troy Tulowitzki is just on another planet right now. He’s doing crazy things at the plate, and dazzling us with the glove. As long as he remains healthy, a tall order for him to fill given the last few seasons, he’s absolutely going to be in the mix for the MVP Award. If he maintains anywhere near this pace while staying off the disabled list, he’s going to sprint away with it.
Gallery Update (4/30)
I’ve finally gotten the gallery updated with game photos dating back to April 11th! Enjoy!
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 11, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 12, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 13, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 14, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 15, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 17, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 18, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 19, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 20, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 22, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 23, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 25, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 26, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 27, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 28, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 29, 2014
Showering you with stats at the end of April
Posted by Jen on Apr 30th, 2014 • News
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April stats are often dangerous in their duplicity, treacherous in their trickery. At times, though, they’ve proven eerily instructive, too.
That’s why we like to take a moment each year at the end of April to make mention of some of the more noteworthy numbers the first month has brought us. These are just a few of the odd, alarming, amazing or otherwise interesting stats that caught our eye. Feel free to add your own in the comments.
All stats are through Tuesday’s play.
5: Number of American League East teams with a negative run differential.
4: Number of AL Central teams with a positive run differential (sorry, Cleveland).
2-15: The D-backs’ home record.
1-5: The Dodgers’ record in extra-innings games.
13-7: The Dodgers’ record in all other games.
12.0: At-bats per home run for Pujols this year.
10: Home runs for Jose Abreu. He’s on pace to become just the 12th rookie (and the first since Pujols) to hit 30 homers and drive in 100.
11: Home runs for the entire Royals team. No club in the Wild Card era has had a homer rate as low as Kansas City does now and has gone on to make the playoffs.
1: “Tonight Show” appearances for Robinson Cano.
1: Home runs for Cano. He has an .049 isolated power mark and a .366 slugging percentage at Safeco Field.
27: RBIs for the Twins’ Chris Colabello, the 30-year-old undrafted outfielder signed by Minnesota out of independent ball two years ago.
.379: National League-best batting average for Charlie Blackmon, who went 6-for-6 on April 4.
.753: Troy Tulowitzki’s slugging percentage, best in baseball by more than 100 points.
1.6: Home runs per nine innings given up last year by Aaron Harang, an extreme fly-ball pitcher.
1.90: Atlanta’s rotation ERA, after losing Kris Medlen, Brandon Beachy and Mike Minor to injury.
6.04: Minnesota’s rotation ERA, after gaining Ricky Nolasco and Phil Hughes in free agency.
.136 The opposition’s batting average off Johnny Cueto.
16.2: Percentage of the season that has been played, making it quite possible all of the above will be rendered moot.
But thanks for reading, anyway.
Read the full list at MLB.com
Photos: Colorado vs. Miami, Arizona, & Chicago
I’ve just added photos from opening week against the Marlins, Diamondbacks, and White Sox into the gallery.
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > March 31, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 1, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 2, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 3, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 4, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 6, 2014
• Colorado Rockies > Games > 2014 > April 7, 2014
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