A place where Colorado Rockies baseball card collectors (all 3 of us) can waste some time reading about our favorite sport. The Rockies and their cards will be the primary focus, but I like to go off on tangents as well so anything and everything baseball related may be covered here.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Poll now up...I goofed

I forgot to include the poll for the Rock Star selection today.  I guess this proves I ain't perfect.  It is up now and everything is all operational.

Rock Stars - Left Handed Reliever

With the bullpen, I decided at the beginning to have 3 right-handers and 2 left-handers total, so I was waiting for the results of closer to figure out how many of each you guys (and myself) could choose.  Since southpaw Brian Fuentes won the closer race, we will picking one more lefty for the Rock Star pen this week.  Lefty reliever is possibly the weakest position in Rockies history as you will soon see, surprisingly even weaker than second base.  Primarily this is because, aside from Fuentes, most recognizable relievers in Rockies history have been rightys.  Here are the five choices (including one holdover from closer) for the LOOGY on the Rock Star team.

Bruce Ruffin (1993-97)
Bruce Ruffin was signed as a free agent from the Brewers before the Rockies inaugural season in 1993.  He had primarily been a starting pitcher before his Rockies career, but was converted midway through the 1993 season.  In his five years with the Rockies, Ruffin was the primary closer for three of those years.  His career record was 17-18 with a 3.84 ERA and 60 saves.  Ruffin retired from baseball following not making the 1998 team.

Chuck McElroy (1998-99)
Veteran reliever Chuck McElroy was acquired from Arizona during the 1997 expansion draft for pinch hitter Harvey Pulliam.  McElroy spent 1 and a half season wearing purple pinstripes and was a very effective reliever for the first year, but blew up in his second season in Denver.  He finished his Rockies career with a career record of 9-5 with a 4.13 ERA in 119 appearances.  McElroy was traded to the Mets along with Darryl Hamilton for three players, including outfielder Brian McRae, that accumulated a total of 20 games played for Colorado.

Gabe White (2000-01)
Gabe White was acquired from Cincinnati at the beginning of the 2000 season for reliever Manny Aybar.  White spent nearly two full seasons in Denver with a fair amount of success, mainly in his first season.  He had a career record of 12-9 with a 4.00 ERA to go along with 5 saves in 136 appearances.  Following the 2001 season White along with Luke Hudson was traded back to the Reds for Dennys Reyes and Pokey Reese.

Mike Myers (2000-01)
Mike Myers was acquired from Milwaukee for longtime Rockies reliever Curtis Leskanic following the 1999 season.  Myers also spent 2 seasons in Denver and had more successful first season than second, although his drop off was not nearly as dramatic as the prior two entries.  He had a career Rockies record of 2-4 with a 2.74 ERA in 151 appearances.  He was the very definition of a LOOGY because in his 151 games, he only pitched 85.1 innings.  Following the 2001 season, Myers was traded to Arizona for prospects J.D. Closser and Jack Cust.

Franklin Morales (2007-11)
Franklin Morales was signed by the Rockies as an amateur free agent in 2002. Morales was a highly decorated minor league prospect ranking as high #8 overall in the minors in 2008.  In his first two abbreviated seasons, Morales was a starter, but his final 2+ seasons were strictly out of the bullpen.  In his 4+ year career in Denver, Morales ended with a record of 7-11 with a 4.83 ERA to go along with 10 saves in 102 games.  Morales was traded to Boston midway through the 2011 season for a PTBNL or cash (still undecided).

Honorable Mention: Joe Beimel, Javier Lopez, Mike Munoz (sorry, Rosenort), Lance Painter

Voting for the Rock Star left handed reliever can commence immediately and voting may continue until Saturday at 4PM Eastern.  As always, your votes are highly encouraged and appreciated.  Thanx for playing along.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Rock Stars - Closer Results

I have finally figured out a full schedule for the remainder of the Rock Star team.  There's just 5 weeks to go and the multiple picks are coming up after next week.

01/29/12 Left Handed Reliever (choose 1)
02/05/12 Right Handed Reliever (choose 3)
02/12/12 Outfielder (choose 3)
02/19/12 Starting Rotation (choose 5)
02/26/12 Manager (choose 1)

Should be a fun few weeks, but let's check out the results of the closer for the Rock Star team.

Your votes:
Huston Street - 7 votes = 5 points
Brian Fuentes - 6 votes = 4 points
Darren Holmes - 2 votes = 3 points
Jerry DiPoto - 1 vote = 2 points
Bruce Ruffin - 0 votes = 0.5 points
Jose Jimenez - 0 votes = 0.5 points

Brian Fuentes - 8.8 WAR = 5 points
Bruce Ruffin - 5.7 WAR = 4 points
Jerry DiPoto - 4.7 WAR = 3 points
Jose Jimenez - 4.2 WAR = 2 points
Darren Holmes - 3.8 WAR = 1 point
Huston Street - 3.4 WAR = 0 points

My Vote
Huston Street = 5 points
Jose Jimenez = 4 points
Brian Fuentes = 3 points
Bruce Ruffin = 2 points
Jerry DiPoto = 1 point
Darren Holmes = 0 points

Total Score
Brian Fuentes = 12 points
Huston Street = 10 points
Jose Jimenez = 6.5 points
Bruce Ruffin = 6.5 points
Jerry DiPoto = 6 points
Darren Holmes = 4 points

The Rock Star closer is Brian Fuentes

Okay, that one was fun even if it proves how much I dislike WAR as an accurate measurement of ability.  There is no way Huston Street was the 6th best closer in Rockies history.  I could accept 2nd or even 3rd, but 6th is very telling and more so of the statistic than the pitcher.  I also was not the biggest Brian Fuentes fan, well I didn't like how he left even though I understood it.  However, this was how I set up the parameters for making the team so I will honor it and we will have our "Bush v. Gore" moment with Brian Fuentes as the winning closer.  That being said, Fuentes was probably the best closer in team history, just not as likable.  I was a little surprised at the lack of love for Jose Jimenez, although it is understandable because at times I forget about him too even though he was a darn good closer for his four years in Denver.  Jimenez (and to an extent Fuentes) is the rare breed of pitcher that had a much better career at Coors than away from it.  But for now let's celebrate Brian Fuentes as the Rock Star closer in the closest competition yet.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

TRADE BAIT: 2011 Various Sets

I figured I would try a little something different with my trade bait post.  Before I deleted my last one, I copied and pasted it here.  To that older post I am going to add a new set (2011 A&G in this case) for the people that did see the last time.  I will also keep the old stuff, so that people that missed the post the first time around can see it fresh again.

Email me at hiflewATyahooDOTcom or comment below if you'd like to get a trade going.

red = claimed

7 7 9 11 13 17 29 32 33 36 39 40 41 43 45 46 54 58 58 60 65 66 69 69 70 71 72 74 75 80 82 83 83 85 87 87 90 91 92 93 95 102 104 104 104 104 104 105 105 107 107 113 113 113 122 122 127 130 132 134 134 139 139 139 139 139 140 140 141 141 141 141 141 141 141 142 144 148 148 154 155 155 158 161 162 162 163 163 164 167 168 169 170 170 171 172 172 172 173 175 182 184 186 187 187 188 189 191 191 193 193 195 195 196 198 198 200 202 204 204 205 206 206 209 209 211 211 216 217 218 218 220 220 220 220 220 221 221 223 224 224 227 228 228 230 230 230 230 235 239 239 239 243 245 246 246 247 249 250 250 250 250 250 250 250 252 252 255 255 256 256 264 264 264 265 267 270 270 270 270 272 276 276 276 276 276 276 276 283 283 283 286 295 297 299 299 301 301 301 303 304 307 309 310 311 311 312 317 317 318 323 326 332 338 338 339 341 342 342 342 342 345 348 349 358 365 373 377 377 377 377 377 377 390 391 394 394 394 395 404 406 408 416 425 428 439 440 441 446 460 466 468 477 482 489 495 503 507 507 516 533 536 540 542 543 547 548 560 560 560 560 568 579 581 582 583 583 613 613 613 613 642

Topps Heritage
2 8 12 14 23 27 29 37 41 43 44 55 56 56 56 58 74 79 80 83 86 91 93 97 109 112 114 119 119 121 121 121 124 139 139 141 141 142 142 151 160 170 174 177 177 178 183 190 205 205 210 218 229 240 252 258 264 290 296 305 314 321 327 327 332 333 334 335 341 342 350 353 353 357 372 373 375 377 378 378 379 379 380 393 393 393 396 396 396 401 407 411 413 415 415 418 424

Topps Allen & Ginter
2 3 6 10 11 17 21 25 26 28 29 31 34 35 40 45 46 51 53 59 61 64 65 71 78 82 89 95 96 97 102 103 104 106 111 113 115 123 131 141 149 154 159 164 165 167 168 181 186 193 193 193 196 207 209 212 214 220 225 231 234 237 240 242 252 256 260 261 266 268 276 279 280 291 296 297 

Hometown Heroes
9 20 36 50 56 65 74 80 94 97 99
Baseball Highlight Sketches
2 12 15 23
Floating Fortresses
10 20
Minds that Made the Future


2011 Kimball Champions
12 34 41 41 50 51 99 113 115 136 148

2011 Gypsy Queen 
Regular back
96 276 276 287 

2011 A&G
A&G back
Uninvited Guests
2 3
Animals in Peril
Portraits in Penultimacy
4 5
World's Most Mysterious Figures
2 7

Monday, January 23, 2012

Rock Stars - Closer

I had intended on putting up the outfielders yesterday, but with 15 candidates I wanted to give the full 6 days of voting.  So I will feature the outfield next Sunday and we can knock out a closer this week.  With relievers, I am going to do something a little different.  I will start out with a closer limited to only closers obviously.  Then after the closer is selected I will group the runners-up along with non-closing relievers and we will choose 1 righty and 1 lefty over two weeks.  Closer should be one of the more competitive positions available.  I couldn't narrow it down to 5, so here are your 6 candidates for the closer of the Rock Star Team.

Darren Holmes (1993-97)
Darren Holmes was the original closer for the expansion Rockies after being selected in the expansion draft from the Brewers.  Holmes also did something you don't usually see from a reliever, he hit a home run in 1997 off the Expos' Carlos Perez.  In his five year Rockies career, Holmes was the primary closer for two of those years.  His career record was 23-13 with a 4.42 ERA to go along with 46 saves.  Holmes joined the New York Yankees as a free agent following the 1997 season.

Bruce Ruffin (1993-97)
Bruce Ruffin was signed as a free agent from the Brewers before the Rockies inaugural season in 1993.  He had primarily been a starting pitcher before his Rockies career, but was converted midway through the 1993 season.  In his five years with the Rockies, Ruffin was the primary closer for three of those years.  His career record was 17-18 with a 3.84 ERA and 60 saves.  Ruffin retired from baseball following not making the 1998 team.

Jerry DiPoto (1997-2000)
Jerry DiPoto was acquired from the New York Mets in a trade for Armando Reynoso in the 1996 offseason.  DiPoto, the current GM of the Angels, served as closer for two years of his four year Rockies career.  He had a career record of 12-12 with a 4.21 ERA to go along with 36 saves.  He retired following the 2000 season which was split between Colorado and AAA Colorado Springs.

Jose Jimenez (2000-03)
In the 1999 offseason, Jose Jimenez was acquired from the Cardinals in a multi-player deal that sent Darryl Kile to St. Louis.  Although he was a starter with the Cardinals, Jimenez immediately took over as closer in  2000 and kept the job for his entire 4 year Rockies career.  He had a career record of 15-23 with a 4.13 ERA and 102 saves including a Rockies record 41 in 2002.  He left via free agency for Cleveland following the 2003 season.

Brian Fuentes (2002-08)
In 2001, Brian Fuentes was acquired from Seattle as one of the three prospects traded for Jeff Cirillo.  He definitely turned out to be the gem of that trade.  He served as the primary closer for the final four years of his seven year Rockies career making the All Star team in three of those years.  He had a career record of 16-26 with a 3.38 ERA and 115 saves for Colorado.  He was signed as a free agent by the Angels following the 2008 season.

Huston Street (2009-11)
In the 2008 offseason, Street was acquired along with Carlos Gonzalez from Oakland for Rockies superstar Matt Holliday.  The deal obviously turned into quite a steal for the Rockies and Street was a big part of that.  He served as the primary closer his entire three season career in Denver.  He had a career record of 9-9 with a 3.50 ERA and 84 saves.  In the 2011 offseason, Street was traded to San Diego for minor league pitching prospect Nick Schmidt.

Honorable Mention: Dave Veres, Shawn Chacon, Rafael Betancourt

Voting for the Rock Star closer can begin immediately and will run through Saturday at 4PM Eastern.  I am really looking forward to this vote, because I think I know who will win but I'm not positive and there are some really good choices here.  Your votes, as always, are highly encouraged and appreciated.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Rockies Acquire Marco Scutaro for Clayton Mortensen...Yet Another New Rockie Older than Me

The Rockies continued their off season trade-fest by shipping off starter/reliever Clayton Mortensen to Boston for Marco Scutaro.  Despite playing shortstop with the Red Sox, Scutaro will more than likely be at the top of the second base depth chart in Denver. 

Most Rockies fans are absolutely in love with this deal, but I am more in the "it's great, but.." camp.  On paper, this trade looks like an absolute steal for the Rockies, but I liked Mortensen.  He didn't have the great pitching alphabet soup measurables like xFip and he had a miserable year in AAA with Colorado Springs, but he did okay in Denver.  I didn't dread seeing him pitch, unlike several other guys in 2011 and to be honest I don't give a crap how badly someone pitches in Colorado Springs because Greg Maddux in his prime would have trouble there. 

That being said, it is nice to get a proven starting second baseman in Scutaro in exchange for probably an excess pitcher.  The problem there is what happens to Chris Nelson, Jonathan Herrera, and the guy I was really looking forward to seeing, D.J. LeMahieu.  Nelson will probably make the club as a backup, unless he has an awful spring in which case he is probably done because he has no options left.  LeMahieu is probably going to AAA to start the year.  Herrera is the real wild card because I could see him being traded, released, sent down, or as an ML backup depending on his spring performance.  I think this might actually set the main roster now we just need to get to Spring Training and figure out a pitching rotation and the position back ups.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Rock Stars - Shortstop Results

Tomorrow is going to be a really big post as we sort through the outfield for the Rock Star team.  Before that let's go ahead and finish out the infield with the results from shortstop.

Your votes
Troy Tulowitzki - 13 votes = 4 points
Clint Barmes - 3 votes = 3 points
Walt Weiss - 0 votes = 1 point
Neifi Perez - 0 votes = 1 point
Juan Uribe - 0 votes = 1 point

Troy Tulowitzki - 23.7 WAR = 4 points
Clint Barmes - 7.6 WAR = 3 points
Walt Weiss - 4.3 WAR = 2 points
Juan Uribe - 2.3 WAR = 1 point
Neifi Perez - 1.1 WAR = 0 points

My Vote
Troy Tulowitzki = 4 points
Walt Weiss = 3 points
Clint Barmes = 2 points
Neifi Perez = 1 point
Juan Uribe = 0 points

Total Score
Troy Tulowitzki = 12 points (unanimous selection)
Clint Barmes = 8 points
Walt Weiss = 6 points
Neifi Perez = 2 points
Juan Uribe = 2 points

The Rock Star shortstop is Troy Tulowitzki

Shocking, I know.  Troy Tulowitzki is still relatively young and probably hasn't even peaked yet.  Good days are ahead assuming there are no major health issues.  As of now, I fully expect Tulo to become a Hall of Famer especially since Barry Larkin just got elected and I consider Tulo at least as good as Larkin with the potential to become much better.  I know a couple of bloggers that are probably foaming at the mouth at that last comment, but I am not saying Larkin was not a great shortstop or a Hall of Famer.  I just think Tulo can be a step above him in the long run.  As far as depth in the minors, the Rockies have a couple of top shortstops prospects (Josh Rutledge, Trevor Story) that really need to learn how to play 2nd base very well if they want to play in Denver, but I suspect one if not both will eventually be traded for help elsewhere.  This completes the Rock Star infield with four unanimous selections.  I'm not sure whether that is a good thing, because while it means there was one overall best player, it also means that there was pretty much only one choice for most positions.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Rockies trade Kevin Slowey to the Indians...I Hope He Has His ID Card Updated for Cleveland

The Rockies today traded Kevin Slowey to the Cleveland Indians for prospect reliever Zach Putnam.  Slowey was acquired earlier this offseason for a marginal prospect and never wore the Colorado uniform. 

MY THOUGHTS:  I am very happy with this move because Slowey is due to make $3 million this year and that money can now be put toward acquiring a second baseman (Marco Scutaro is the current rumor).  This move also thins the herd for the 5th starter and will potentially allow Jamie Moyer to make the team now.  Another reason I like this trade is that I have actually heard of Zach Putnam.  I couldn't pick him out of a line up, but I remember the name.  I really hope Slowey does not get a Rockies card this year in one of the early sets, simply because he never played in even Spring Training.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Back to the Hot Stove...Rockies Sign Pitcher Older than the Actual Rockies

In a rumored move for the last couple of days the Rockies signed free agent 49 year old pitcher Jamie Moyer to a minor league deal pending his passing a physical.  Moyer missed last season due to injury.

MY THOUGHTS:  Believe it or not, I love this move.  There are starters in the Rockies training camp that were not yet born when the above card was printed, so Moyer should be able to pass along some knowledge.  Even the elder statesman of the Rockies starter candidates (Jason Hammel) is 20! years younger than Moyer, so I think everyone involved can benefit from this move.  Moyer is not likely to make the team, but his experience could help transform the mishmash currently in Denver.  If he does make the rotation, this could be one of the greatest comebacks in the history of baseball.

BONUS TRIVIA:  Now that the Seth Smith has been traded as of earlier this week, the great Rockies trivia of having both Manning brother's backup quarterbacks on the roster is over.  Here is the NEW great Rockies trivia.  Aside from Andres Galarraga, Jamie Moyer was born before than the entire 1993 Rockies Opening Day lineup (and we were the OLD expansion team compared to the baby Marlins).  Have fun with that one.

What the Hell Do I Know? This is Why I Try Not to be Political...I'm Usually Wrong

Maybe Wikipedia and many other sites (including a few of our great card blogs) know what they are doing.  I just found this article and maybe the protest worked.


Tentatively good news for us all.

I try my best not to be political here, BUT

This will be my (hopefully) only politics-related post, because quite frankly I am about as anti-politics as anyone with half a brain can be.  I am normally very apathetic to the whole process because you never choosing the best candidate for an office, you are choosing the least worst candidate or the "lesser of two evils."  Republicans protect the interests of the super wealthy, while Democrats protects the interest of the slightly less wealthy.  I fall into the "poor" category that neither serves.  I am now 35 years old and it wasn't THAT long ago that I was so excited to start voting, then I realized how little I mattered in the grand scheme of things.  But for now I will digress.

The point of this rant is that while I have not read the SOPA bill in full (probably like many of our representatives), I get the general gist of it.  I think it's horrible, but I also think people's responses to it are just as non-productive.  This is why I have decided to NOT black out my site today.  Wikipedia going "black" for one day will just prove that we can get by without Wikipedia.  I am not a fan of the site except for purely entertaining reading, but I hate the fact that many people see it as a worthy research site.  Nevertheless, shutting down your site for even a day ONLY hurts your regular viewers.  It won't make an impact on Congress, it will only punish those that already like your site. 

Should the time ever come when my site is taken down because of some idiotic politicians bending over for the entertainment industry, then there will be plenty of time for a "black out day."  For now, I suggest you take a look at the archives of some of your favorite blogs (including mine hopefully).  All of us blog writers have put a lot of ourselves into the creation of our sites and I think a day of reflection will serve a better purpose.  I have been and will be checking out some of my peers' work from the past few years today to improve myself as a writer, blog owner, and maybe even a person and ultimately this will serve a purpose unlike shutting my site down.  I really hate talking politics and I hope this is the last time I will ever have to on this fun-loving, diversionary blog.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Seth Smith traded to A's for two pitchers...Rockies Now Have Enough Starting Pitchers for a Spinoff Team (Coming Next Season CSI: Vegas Rockies)

Today the Rockies traded outfielder (and the bane of existence to all lispers) Seth Smith to the Oakland Athletics for right handed pitcher Guillermo Moscoso and southpaw Josh Outman (who at least has a good name for a pitcher).  Smith had been complete surplus after the Rockies signed Michael Cuddyer earlier this offseason and had been involved in many, many trade rumors. 

MY THOUGHTS:  How many freaking starting pitchers does one team need?  Are we going with an 8 man rotation?  I get that Smith was completely extra and needed to be moved, but if you are going to trade him get some legit prospects instead of two major league ready guys.  We now have 13 starters on the 40 man roster with only 3-4 of them not proven in the majors, but probably ready.  I have no idea what the Rockies are trying to accomplish.  I am just dumbfounded, because we don't have a proven 2nd baseman and just traded our best trade chip for stuff we already had.  Perhaps another trade is in the offing, but today it makes ABSOLUTELY no sense.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Rock Stars - Shortstop

Aside from the outlier that is first base, shortstop has been among the most consistent positions for the Rockies.  8 players have started the 19 Opening Days for the Rockies and 4 players accounted for 15 of those.  Only first base and right field have had fewer OD starters.  Barring injury, I don't expect that number to go up for a number of years obviously.  This position has also been fielded mainly by "true" Rockies, or players that were originally signed or drafted by the team.  Here are the nominees for the starting shortstop on the Rock Star team.

Walt Weiss (1994-97)
Walt Weiss was acquired as a free agent from the Marlins before the 1994 season and became the first player to play for both expansion teams.  Weiss spent four seasons in Denver and posted a line of .266/.375/.347 with 14 home runs and 42 stolen bases.  Aside from one very poor season in 1996 in which he led the league with 30 errors, Weiss played relatively good defense for the Rockies.  He left via free agency to join Atlanta after the 1997 season.

Neifi Perez (1996-2001)
Neifi Perez was one of the first ever signings of the Rockies organization in 1992 as an amateur free agent out of the Dominican Republic.  In his 6 seasons with the big league club, including 3 and half as the undisputed starter, Perez hit .282/.313/.411 with 43 HRs and 33 SBs.  Defensively, Perez was very good to great at times, winning the NL Gold Glove in 2000.  Perez was traded to the Kansas City Royals at the 2001 trade deadline for outfielder Jermaine Dye, who never played a single game for Colorado.

Juan Uribe (2001-03)
In 1997, Juan Uribe was also signed as an amateur free agent from the Dominican Republic.  He made his way to the majors in mid-2001.  In 2 and a half seasons, Uribe posted a line of .258/.298/.408 with 24 homers and 19 steals.  Defensively, Uribe was average at best committing 27 errors in his one full season in 2002.  Uribe was traded following an injury-plagued 2003 season to the White Sox for second base prospect Aaron Miles.

Clint Barmes (2003-10)
Clint Barmes was selected by the Rockies in the 10th round in the 2000 amateur draft.  He made to the big leagues in 2003 and bounced back and forth between MLB and AAA several times.  His Rockies career can be almost perfectly divided in two between his time as the starting shortstop and his later years as the second baseman.  He played about 30 total games more at shortstop, so that is his position.  In his 8 seasons with the Rockies, Barmes hit .254/.300/.404 with 61 HRs and 39 SBs.  Defensively, Barmes was fairly pedestrian committing 35 errors in his two seasons as the main shortstop.  Barmes was traded in the 2011 offseason to Houston for Felipe Paulino (ugh!).

Troy Tulowitzki (2006-Present)
Troy Tulowitzki was selected in the 1st round (7th overall) of the 2005 draft.  He quickly rose through the minors and took over at shortstop near the end of the 2006 season.  He has been a big part of the two most recent postseason runs of the Rockies.  In his 6 seasons in Denver, Tulo has been an All Star twice, a Gold Glover twice, a Silver Slugger twice, finished 2nd in Rookie of he Year voting (don't get me started), and had 3 top 10 MVP finishes AND he is still just 27 years old.  Overall, Tulo has posted a line of .293/.364/.505 with 122 HRs and 51 steals.  Defensively, Tulowitzki is quite possibly even better leading the league in range factor in 4 of the past 5 years. 

Honorable Mention: Freddie Benavides, Royce Clayton, Jose Hernandez

Voting for the Rock Star shortstop can begin immediately and will, as usual, run until Saturday at 4PM Eastern.  Once again, I appreciate your votes and comments since that makes all this work worthwhile.  I am still working on how next week's position will work, but I should have more of an idea on Saturday when I post the results of this vote.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Rock Stars - Third Base Results

Tomorrow we will be finishing out the infield with a fairly obvious position, but let's take a look at what I originally thought would be a competitive matchup at third.

Your votes
Vinny Castilla - 15 votes = 4 points
Jeff Cirillo - 2 votes = 3 points
Garrett Atkins - 1 vote = 1.5 points
Ian Stewart - 1 vote = 1.5 points
Charlie Hayes - 0 votes = 0 points

Vinny Castilla - 15.1 WAR = 4 points
Garrett Atkins - 10.9 WAR = 3 points
Jeff Cirillo - 8.1 WAR = 2 points
Charlie Hayes - 3.7 WAR = 1 point
Ian Stewart - 1.9 WAR = 0 points

My vote
Vinny Castilla = 4 points
Garrett Atkins = 3 points
Jeff Cirillo = 2 points
Charlie Hayes = 1 point
Ian Stewart = 0 points

Total Score
Vinny Castilla = 12 points (unanimous selection)
Garrett Atkins = 7.5 points
Jeff Cirillo = 7 points
Charlie Hayes = 2 points
Ian Stewart = 1.5 points

The Rock Star third baseman is Vinny Castilla.

Just like last week with Eric Young, this is a good timing victory with Vinny Castilla appearing on the Hall of Fame ballot and getting 6 votes this week.  I figured Vinny would win this, but I was surprised at how popular he is with you, the voters.  Granted, a lot of people forget just how good Garrett Atkins was for a couple of years and Jeff Cirillo is probably more identified with Milwaukee than Colorado.  Castilla is another of the Blake Street Bombers that WAR doesn't give enough credit to, but for me and my fandom Vinny Castilla was a great player.  No one held a gun to anyone's head and forced them to put a franchise in Denver and Castilla couldn't help that he played his games there, but he did put up some serious numbers with the opportunity.  Nolan Arenado is the Rockies top prospect and hopefully will be primed to be a contender for this spot in the future, but for now let's appreciate Vinny Castilla.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Rockies Foiled in their Attempt at Creating an All Former QB Major League Team

Russell Wilson, popular QB for the Wisconsin football team and Rockies minor leaguer, has decided to forgo his baseball career in an attempt to make it as a quarterback in the NFL.  Wilson was the Rockies 4th round pick in the 2010 draft.  He hit .228 in low Class A in 2011, so the big leagues in baseball was probably not in his future anyway.  The biggest problem is his size.  He is not the ideal size for an NFL quarterback, but that doesn't mean he couldn't succeed it just means he will have to go through more hoops to succeed.

This now means that there are only 3 former BCS college quarterbacks in the Rockies system.  Todd Helton from Tennessee, Seth Smith from Ole Miss, and 2010 1st round pick Kyle Parker from Clemson.  Maybe this means that Rockies scouts can stop watching football games when scouting and start checking out the baseball games going on.

In case you haven't voted for the Rock Star third baseman, you have less than 2 days left.  Thanx for reading.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

*WANT LIST* Rockies Topps Flagship Sets

Some of you may remember my biggest Mountain to Climb in 2012 was to complete every Rockies team set from each Topps flagship and Traded/Update set.  I figured the easiest way to do that was to get a want list rather than wait five years to get my yearly want lists finished.  I was actually surprised by how few team sets I actually had completed.  You should be able to spot the weakest years in my collection here as well.

If you have any of these cards and would like to make a trade, email me at hiflewATyahooDOTcom or make a comment down below.  Thanx for reading.

red = pending arrival

39/39 = 100.0% COMPLETE

1993 Topps - COMPLETE

1993 Topps Traded - COMPLETE

1994 Topps - COMPLETE

1994 Topps Traded - COMPLETE

1995 Topps - COMPLETE

1995 Topps Traded - COMPLETE

1996 Topps - COMPLETE

1997 Topps - COMPLETE

1998 Topps - COMPLETE

1999 Topps - COMPLETE

1999 Topps Traded - COMPLETE

2000 Topps - COMPLETE

2000 Topps Traded - COMPLETE

2001 Topps - COMPLETE

2001 Topps Traded - COMPLETE

2002 Topps - COMPLETE

2002 Topps Traded - COMPLETE

2003 Topps - COMPLETE

2003 Topps Traded - COMPLETE

2004 Topps - COMPLETE

2004 Topps Traded - COMPLETE

2005 Topps - COMPLETE

2005 Topps Update - COMPLETE

2006 Topps - COMPLETE

2006 Topps Update - COMPLETE

2007 Topps - COMPLETE

2007 Topps Update - COMPLETE

2008 Topps - COMPLETE

2008 Topps Update - COMPLETE

2009 Topps - COMPLETE

2009 Topps Update - COMPLETE

2010 Topps - COMPLETE

2010 Topps Update - COMPLETE

2011 Topps - COMPLETE

2011 Topps Update - COMPLETE

2012 Topps - COMPLETE

2012 Topps Update - COMPLETE

2013 Topps - COMPLETE

2013 Topps Update - COMPLETE
2014 Topps - SERIES 1 COMPLETE

Monday, January 9, 2012

Congratulations to Barry Larkin - Newest Member of the Baseball Hall of Fame

It's Official and here are the votes followed by their jump (or fall in two cases) from last year.

Barry Larkin 495 (86.4%) +24.3%

Jack Morris 382 (66.7%) +13.2%
Jeff Bagwell 321 (56.0%) +14.3%
Lee Smith 290 (50.6%) +5.3%
Tim Raines 279 (48.7%) +11.2%
Alan Trammell 211 (36.8%) +12.5%
Edgar Martinez 209 (36.5%) +3.6%
Fred McGriff 137 (23.9%) +6.6% 
Larry Walker 131 (22.9%) +2.6%
Mark McGwire 112 (19.5%) -0.3%
Don Mattingly 102 (17.8%) +4.2%
Dale Murphy 83 (14.5%) +1.9%
Rafael Palmeiro 72 (12.6%) +1.6%
Bernie Williams 55 (9.6%)

Juan Gonzalez 23 (4.0%) -1.2%
Vinny Castilla 6 (1.0%)
Tim Salmon 5 (0.9%)
Bill Mueller 4 (0.7%)
Brad Radke 2 (0.3%)
Javy Lopez 1 (0.2%)
Eric Young 1 (0.2%)
Jeromy Burnitz 0
Brian Jordan 0
Terry Mulholland 0
Phil Nevin 0
Ruben Sierra 0
Tony Womack 0

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Rock Stars - Third Base

Currently, third base is among the weakest positions on the Rockies team.  However, in franchise history it has often been a position of strength or at the very least average.  There have been 9 different starters at third base in Rockies history and 2012 will bring #10 because, like second base, no one on the current roster has started there.  Let's now take a look at the 5 most accomplished third basemen in Rockies history.

Charlie Hayes (1993-94)
Hayes was the starter at third base in the first game for the Rockies franchise after being chosen with the 3rd overall pick in the Expansion Draft from the Yankees.  Although mostly a journeyman throughout his career, Hayes was pretty good fro the Rockies in his 2 seasons hitting .298/.352/.484 with 35 HRs and 148 RBIs.  Defense was probably Hayes' undoing having committed 37 errors in his 2 years in Denver.  He left the Rockies following the 1994 season strike, joining the Phillies as a free agent.

Vinny Castilla (1993-99, 2004, 2006)
Castilla is fondly remembered as one of the Blake Street Bombers from the mid to late 90s.  He actually had three different stints with the club rejoining in 2004 and for a short time in 2006 before retiring.  In a total of nine seasons with the Rockies, Castilla hit .294/.340/.530 with 239 homers and 745 RBIs including surprisingly leading the NL in 2004.  Castilla was also named twice to the All Star team and won 3 Silver Sluggers.  Castilla was traded to Tampa Bay following the 1999 season in a rare four team deal that also involved the A's and Brewers.

Jeff Cirillo (2000-01)
Jeff Cirillo was acquired in the previously mentioned four team deal from the Brewers along with Scott Karl in exchange for Jamey Wright and Henry Blanco.  Cirillo was a different type of hitter for the Rockies, more of a contact hitter than a power hitter.  In his 2 seasons in Denver, Cirillo hit .320/.379/.475 with 28 homers and 198 RBIs.  He was also named to one All Star team as a Rockie.  Defensively, he was pretty good with only 22 errors in his 2 seasons.  Following the 2001 season, Cirillo was traded to Seattle for three pitchers including Brian Fuentes.

Garrett Atkins (2003-09)
Garrett Atkins was selected by the Rockies in the 5th round of the 2000 MLB Draft as a first baseman, but once he started rising in the minors he was switched to third.  He was the primary starting third baseman from 2005-09 and was very good for his first few years.  He hit .289/.354/.457 with 98 homers and 479 RBIs in his 7 seasons in Denver.  Although Atkins was very good (arguably the Rockies best player for two of those years) through 2008, he is mostly remembered now for how quickly the bottom fell out of his career.  He was non-tendered following a poor 2009 season and is currently no longer in baseball.

Ian Stewart (2007-11)
Ian Stewart was the 1st round pick (#10 overall) of the Rockies in 2003 and slowly worked his way through the minor leagues.  He made his big league debut in 2007 and became the starting third baseman midway through the 2008 season.  Stewart was pretty much a disappointment, but he did hit .236/.323/.428 with 54 HRs and 187 RBIs.  Those numbers were dragged down somewhat by Stewart falling off a cliff in 2011, before that he wasn't too bad.  This offseason, Stewart and Casey Weathers were shipped to the Cubbies for Tyler Colvin and D.J. LaMahieu.

Honorable Mention: Jeff Baker, Ty Wigginton, Todd Zeile

Voting for the Rock Star third baseman can begin immediately and, as usual, will run through Saturday the 14th (my blog's birthday) at 4PM Eastern time.  It is nice to have a position where you might have to think a bit because at least two of these guys would be worthy of winning this battle.  As always, your votes are both appreciated and necessary for the process.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Rock Stars - Second Base Results

Before moving on to arguably the most competitive position, let's take a look at who was the winner at second base.

Your votes
Eric Young - 7 votes = 5 points
Todd Walker - 4 votes = 4 points
Kazuo Matsui - 1 vote = 3 points
Mike Lansing - 0 votes = 1 point
Aaron Miles - 0 votes = 1 point
Jamey Carroll - 0 votes = 1 point

Eric Young - 9.5 WAR = 5 points
Jamey Carroll - 5.1 WAR = 3.5 points
Kazuo Matsui - 5.1 WAR = 3.5 points
Todd Walker - 1.9 WAR = 2 points
Aaron Miles - 0.2 WAR = 1 point
Mike Lansing - (-0.7 WAR) = 0 points

My vote
Eric Young = 5 points
Jamey Carroll = 4 points
Todd Walker = 3 points
Aaron Miles = 2 points
Kazuo Matsui = 1 point
Mike Lansing = 0 points

Total Score
Eric Young = 15 points (unanimous selection)
Todd Walker = 9 points
Jamey Carroll = 8.5 points
Kazuo Matsui = 7.5 points
Aaron Miles = 4 points
Mike Lansing = 1 point

The Rock Star second baseman is Eric Young.

Good timing for an Eric Young victory since he is on the Hall of Fame ballot for the first (and probably only) time this year.  I almost had to pick Jamey Carroll as my #1 for his defense, but in the end Young had to be the choice.  Somewhat ironically the man that came in last, Mike Lansing, also started the most Opening Days at second with 3.  On a related note, shouldn't Mike Lansing's (and 90% of the rest of the Mitchell Report) PED usage prove that they don't really help with overall baseball performance?   But that is for another day, for today is celebrating Eric Young.  It is arguable whether EY or Iannetta will be the weak link of the group, and I won't get into that because they have such different skill sets that comparisons would be useless.  However I will say what I have always said, second base has ALWAYS been the Rockies weak spot and 2012 is not looking any different.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Rockies trade "Evan Longoria" to the Rangers for the (soon to be former) Manager's Son

Sorry Brian, didn't mean to get you all excited.  The Rockies today traded the guy they decided was better than Evan Longoria to the Rangers for minor leaguer Chad Tracy.  That name will look familiar to a lot of you, but it is not the old Diamondback that is currently plying his trade in Japan.  This Chad Tracy is the son of Rockies manager Jim Tracy.  I actually mentioned the younger Tracy when I was writing up my Quarry Cards posts back in November. 

MY THOUGHTS:  Good riddance!  It's nothing personal toward Mr. Reynolds, who is probably a nice enough guy, but the Rockies spent their highest draft pick ever (#2 overall) on this guy.  Both Evan Longoria and Rockies fans were convinced he would be the pick, but at the last minute the Rockies decided to not draft a third baseman because they decided Ian Stewart was third baseman of the future.  Then, instead of drafting Clayton Kershaw or Tim Lincecum, the Rockies picked Greg Reynolds from Stanford who contributed a career 7.47 ERA in the big leagues. 

I think the Rockies would be better off if the draft was abolished, because Reynolds was not even their biggest 1st round blunder, that would be Matt Harrington.  Here is a great article about Harrington that I could never hope to top.

As far as Tracy goes, he led the minors in RBIs in 2011 and plays first base where for the Rockies, Todd Helton is the youngster of the two guys in the majors.  Needless to say, there will probably be an opening in the near future and there is very little in the minors at first.  He's worth a flyer.  I really hope this doesn't mean Jim Tracy stays past this season.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

The Hall of Fame vote...One Man's Opinion

Right before my December Hot Stove period began, I posted the 2012 ballot for the Baseball Hall of Fame.  Now that I have had some time to digest the names on the list, I figured now would be a perfect time to discuss who will go in this year, who should go in eventually, and who I would put in on this former Rockies (6) heavy ballot.

Let's start with the returning candidates.

Before I get flamed, the first phrase (will or will not) refers to this year ONLY.  The second phrase (should or should not) refers to whether I think that player will get voted in, not whether I think they should get voted in.

Barry Larkin - 62.1% last year - will go in
I will argue to my dying day that Dante Bichette deserved the 1995 NL MVP over Larkin, but I will also argue that Larkin had a far better career.  He is a Hall of Famer and were it not for injuries, he would have already been in.

Jack Morris - 53.5% - will not go in, should not go in
I don't think Morris makes it this year and with his limited eligibility he won't make it on the stacked ballots in his final two years of eligibility either.  Basically Morris fans, if he doesn't get in this year, he probably won't ever make it into the Hall.

Lee Smith - 45.3% - will not go in, should not go in
Smith could be one of those candidates that gets in on his final year of eligibility (he has 6 years left counting 2012).  I think he will be left out, probably topping at around the level of Tony Oliva or Gil Hodges (low 60%). 

Jeff Bagwell - 41.7% - will go in
This would probably surprise most and honestly I surprised myself when I made this pick.  Bagwell needs a full 33.3% of voters to add him this year.  That is a lot, but I think it will happen because the writers that left him off for whatever asinine reason SHOULD come to their senses this year.  If it doesn't, he won't see the Hall until 2017 at the earliest because everyone else will overshadow him in the upcoming years.

Tim Raines - 37.5% - will not go in, should go in
Raines is an interesting case.  He is only in his 5th year of eligibility, so he has plenty of time for voters to consider him.  I think he will steadily climb and probably go in around 2019 or so (much later than he should).

Edgar Martinez - 32.9% - will not go in, should go in
Martinez is the most controversial candidate that doesn't have steroids attached to him.  The question is should a DH get into the Hall.  I think he will get a big bump this year and eventually sneak in.  On a personal note, if DHs aren't ever allowed in shouldn't American League pitchers also be kept out of the Hall since they don't play both sides either?

Alan Trammell - 24.3% - will not go in, should not go in
Trammell is BELOVED by Tigers fans and was a good/great player.  I do not think he will ever get voted in, but I think he has the best chance of anyone else on the ballot of getting voted in by the Veteran's Committee one day.

Larry Walker - 20.3% - will not go in, should not go in - former Rockie
This one angers me to write, because I feel Larry Walker is a Hall of Famer.  There is no way the writers will vote Walker in just because of the so-called "Coors Effect."  It will be one of happier days as a baseball fan IF Walker does get in one day, ideally on the same ballot as Todd Helton, but I just don't think it will ever happen.

Mark McGwire - 19.8% - will not go in, should go in
We now come to the highest ranked admitted user.  The name of the place is the Hall of Fame.  There haven't been many baseball players in history as famous (with the casual or non-fan) as Mark McGwire from 1998-2001.  The McGwire/Sosa battle in 1998 brought me back as a fan following the 1994 labor debacle.  I think eventually the steroids tarnish will start to go away, but not this year.

Fred McGriff - 17.3% - will not go in, should not go in
This is another that is hard to write because Fred McGriff is my favorite all-time baseball player and second favorite athlete after Walter Payton.  He was the epitome of consistency when it came to playing.  To borrow an analogy for NASCAR, McGriff almost never won the race, but he was ALWAYS in the top 10.  He was never the best first first baseman in baseball, but he was always in the discussion.  I just don't he'll ever get enough support to get in, but he will probably last 15 years on the ballot.

Don Mattingly - 13.6% - will not go in, should not go in
When I first got into in baseball in 1985 or so, if you asked me to name 5 sure fire future Hall of Famers Don Mattingly would have been on that list.  Unfortunately, Mattingly's career, while having a Hall of Fame peak, just dropped off too soon for consideration.  He will also last 15 years, but never get too close to election.

Dale Murphy - 12.6% - will not go in, should not go in - former Rockie
Another name on that list of 5 sure fire Hall of Famers would have been Dale Murphy.  After a couple of MVP years, Murphy turned into the best player on some really bad Braves teams in the 80s.  Also like Mattingly, his skills dropped off too quickly for serious consideration.  He should be in the Braves Hall of Fame, but not the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Rafael Palmeiro - 11.0% - will not go in, should go in
On pure numbers alone, Palmeiro should have been a no doubt first ballot Hall of Famer.  He is one of only four players that are a member of both the 3,000 hit club and the 500 home run club.  However, as you all know with Palmeiro comes the specter of steroids as well.  The tarnish won't go away this year, but IF (and that's a big if) Palmeiro stays on the ballot, he will get in eventually.

Juan Gonzalez - 5.2% - will not go in, should not go in
Has any two-time MVP ever felt like less of a Hall of Famer than Gonzalez?  Even at his peak, I don't remember ever thinking of Gonzalez as a future Hall of Fame player.  He was a very good player, albeit also with the steroids aura around him.  He could stay on the end of the ballot a couple more years, like a Harold Baines, but he'll never get close to getting in.


For the sake of brevity, with this group I am only going to go in depth with the guys I feel could get over 5% this year.

Bernie Williams - will not get in, should not get in
Williams will, without a doubt, get the highest vote total of all newcomers.  That being said, it still shouldn't be higher than 15% or so and most of that will be because he was on some great Yankees teams.  I could see Williams hanging around the bottom of the ballot much like Dale Murphy, but just like Murphy, he belongs in the Yankees Hall of Fame not the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Vinny Castilla - will not get in, should not get in - former Rockie
Along with Dante Bichette, Castilla is most often cited as the best example of the "Coors Effect."  Whether that is true or not, he STILL hit those home runs and drove in those runs which counted the same as everywhere else.  That being said, there is no way Vinny Castilla is a Hall of Famer.  He will never go thirsty in Denver though, I know I would buy him a beer.  He could be in the 5% range, but he is more than likely a one and done.

Ruben Sierra - will not get in, should not get in
For the first 5 or so years of his career, Ruben Sierra looked like he would smash all the records before his career was through.  It didn't happen, of course, as his downturn began with a trade to Oakland.  He was never the dynamic player after that, although he did play for a long time.  Playing for a long time, just doesn't cut it.  Another that might get 5%, but probably won't.

Javy Lopez - will not get in, should not get in
Lopez will get the benefit of both being a catcher and being on the great Braves teams of the 90s.  I don't think he will get 5%, nor should he, but he will probably get enough votes to be among the highest of the one and dones.

Jeromy Burnitz - former Rockie
Brian Jordan
Bill Mueller
Terry Mulholland
Phil Nevin
Brad Radke
Tim Salmon
Tony Womack - former Rockie
Eric Young - former Rockie


If I had a vote, this would be my ballot for this year's Hall of Fame. 

Barry Larkin
Jeff Bagwell
Tim Raines
Edgar Martinez
Alan Trammell
Larry Walker
Mark McGwire
Fred McGriff
Vinny Castilla (no I don't think he is a Hall of Famer, but I'd have to vote for him)
Eric Young (just so he would get 1 vote)

No pitchers on my ballot, but that is just because there aren't that many on the ballot.  I just don't feel either Morris or Smith should be in the Hall.  They just weren't good enough in my book.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Huckster Hiflew Brings Some Plugs...ALL FOR YOU!

Hey friends, it's your old pal Huckster Hiflew ready to give you the opportunity to join in some rather fun card community events.

Let's start with our old friend Sam over at the Daily Dimwit.  He is running a group break and busting 3 recent boxes with hits galore.  One slot will get you two teams, including one of your choice.  How much would you pay for this thrill?  $100? $200? $1,000?  Well, you don't have to because Sam is practically giving the cards away all for the low price of $13.  Now that's a deal.  Click here to join in the fun.

Next up we move to our friend Colbey from Cardboard Collections who is back with another group break.  Colbey is busting three boxes from the late 90s has a couple of spots left.  Colbey is also offering a great deal of 2 teams for one low, low price.  Colbey must be crazy, because he has priced these slots to sell at $9 for 2 teams, one of your choice.  Now, ole Huckster Hiflew knows a good deal when he sees it and joined up himself.  Click here to join Colbey's break.

Now, our old buddy Ryan from This Card is Cool is holding a going away contest before he travels to the Far East.  Now, it seems that Ryan never learned that you are supposed to receive gifts when you are going away instead of giving them.  His generosity (or lack of education regarding the rules of the going away party) can now be your windfall.  He will have seven different winners so join in the fun by clicking here and wishing Ryan a safe journey.

Finally, in case you missed it that wonderful man Johnny from Cards from the Quarry is deciding on the all time Rock Star team.  If you haven't voted for the second baseman read up here and cast your vote.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Rock Stars - Second Base

In sharp contrast to the perpetual greatness of the last position of first base, second base for the Rockies has been a never-ending search for a solid contributor.  For comparison's sake, first base had a total of 2 Opening Day starters in the 19 year history of the franchise, second base has had 14! different starters and no one player has started more than 3.  The past seven years and 11 of the last 12 years have seen a different starter at second.  Even though the 2012 starter is not known by even God, it will be a different person because no one on the roster has started Opening Day at second.  With that as the backdrop for the position, let's take a look at six candidates for the best second baseman in Rockies history.

Eric Young Sr. (1993-97)
Eric Young was the first starting second baseman in Rockies history after being selected from the Dodgers in the first round of the expansion draft.  He is also, along with his son, the first father-son duo to play for the Rockies.  Young is often thought of for his speed, a notion supported by his many cards depicting him on the basepaths.  However, Young was a pretty good all-around ballplayer hitting .295/.378/.412 with 30 homers and 227 RBIs to go along with his 180 stolen bases in his 4+ seasons in Denver.  He was traded back to L.A. in the summer of 1997 for serviceable starter Pedro Astacio.

Mike Lansing (1998-2000)
Mike Lansing was acquired from the Montreal Expos for top prospect Jake Westbrook and others to take over at second in 1998.  His first year in Colorado was fairly successful, but injuries took their toll in subsequent years.  His line with the Rockies was .274/.324/.420 with 27 homers and 128 RBIs in 3 seasons.  He was traded to Boston in a 7 player deal that was largely unspectacular for both sides.  Lansing was later accused of being a PED user in the Mitchell Report during his time with the Rockies.

Todd Walker (2000-01)
Todd Walker was acquired at the 2000 trading deadline from Minnesota along with Butch Huskey for Todd Sears.  Despite losing the confidence of the Twins, Walker immediately stepped in as the Rockies starter at second.  He put up a line of .304/.363/.514 with 19 homers and 79 RBIs in his 2 partial seasons in Denver.  He was traded at the 2001 trading deadine along with Robin Jennings to Cincinnati for outfielder Alex Ochoa.

Aaron Miles (2004-05)
Aaron Miles was acquired from the Chicago White Sox for shortstop Juan Uribe in 2003.  He had a very productive rookie season and finished 4th in the NL Rookie of the Year balloting.  He was in Colorado for two seasons and put up a line of .288/.320/.363 with 8 homers and 75 RBIs.  In the 2005 offseason, Miles was traded to St. Louis with Larry Bigbie for relief pitcher/LOOGY Ray King.

Jamey Carroll (2006-07)
Jamey Carroll (or rather his contract) was purchased from the Washington Nationals for $300,000 prior to Spring Training in 2006.  In two seasons in Denver, Carroll had a line of .275/.357/.370 with 7 homers and 58 RBIs, but defense was Carroll's primary weapon for the Rockies as he led all second basemen in fielding in 2006.  Hardcore Rockies fans such as myself remember Carroll for hitting the sac fly which scored Matt Holliday (yes he touched the plate) in the one game playoff to put the Rocks in the 2007 playoffs.  He was traded to Cleveland following the 2007 season for a minor league pitcher that did not pan out.

Kazuo Matsui (2006-07)
In a "buy low" deal, Kaz Matsui was acquired from the Mets for utilityman Eli Marrero in mid 2006.  After spending much of 2006 in the minors to regain his stroke, Matsui won the starting job at second for 2007.  He performed well in his Rockies career with a line of .300/.353/.426 to go along with 6 homers and 56 RBIs and 40 stolen bases.  After an excellent postseason, Matsui signed as a free agent with the Houston Astros in 2008.

Honorable Mention: Roberto Mejia, Brent Butler, Luis Gonzalez

Voting for second base can begin immediately and will run through Saturday at 4PM Eastern time.  For those of you that may be wondering why I left off the 2008-10 starter (and potential winner) Clint Barmes, he actually played more games at shortstop and will be a featured nominee for that position.  As always, your votes are appreciated and in this case, they are very much needed because this is a challenging hodgepodge to say the least.