In the Rockpile: A Rockies Christmas wish list
With Christmas Eve upon us, I would like to offer readers my Rockies Christmas wish list for 2012. Luckily, part of my intended list has been answered by the acquisition of Michael Cuddyer and Casey Blake (veteran bats).
I know most of this doesn’t have to do with the on-field product, but it has to do with the overall presentation of Rockies baseball … and it is my Christmas wish list. If the Rockies want to adopt it, by all means. Now, I would like to see Santa Claus leave me these presents because I’ve been a good seamhead this year:
Starters with an ERA under 4.00: Coors Field has had some dogs on the mound. It isn’t that the organization hasn’t tried to get quality pitchers, it’s just that once they do, they seem to fizzle (Mike Hampton) or implode (Denny Neagle). Last season, the Rox had eight starters posting a 4.00 ERA or higher — nine if you count Kevin Millwood’s near miss of 3.98.
A Hall of Fame induction for Larry Walker: #33 didn’t get in with the 2011 class, and probably won’t ever get to attach “HoF” to any inscription because he played at Coors Field — pre-humidor — and during the Steroid Era. Todd Helton may suffer the same fate when his time comes. Writers and HoF voters dismiss Rockies players because of their home field.
A statue of a Rockies player on the corner of 20th & Blake: Nothing reminds fans more about the lack of team history quite like a statue of a generic, early 20th century baseball player. Walker or Dante Bichette would make more appropriate subjects, but this statue has to go, or be relocated once Helton retires.
A new home-run call for ROOT Sports Drew Goodman: The home network for Rockies games has a fairly knowledgeable crew, and while I generally love Goodman’s calling of a game, I am worn out on “Take a good look, you won’t see it for long.” It ranks right up there with John Sterling’s “It is high, it is far, it … is … gone!” and pretty much anything that Joe Buck, Chris Collinsworth or Chris Berman says, for that matter. The call is no longer impactful. Say what you want baseball purists.
Fans that care: Denver has the quietest sporting venues with the “tamest” fans. The only house that rocks during a game in Denver is Sports Authority Field @ Mile High, and even the Broncos would generally debate that evaluation. The masses that pour into Coors Field largely do so to drink and socialize — watching the game ranks below people watching and texting.
A new mascot: Too bad the triceratops skeleton found during the construction of Coors Field wasn’t Dinger’s. No mascot should ever bear resemblance to Barney, the original, annoying purple dinosaur.
A new at-bat song for Tulo: Troy Tulowitzki allowed fans last spring to vote on his at-bat song. He whittled down hundreds of suggestions to Katy Perry’s “Firework.” That lasted all of a minute before he changed it to Justin Beiber’s “Baby.” Before that? Britney Spears’ “Gimme More” and Miley Cyrus’ “Party in the USA.” Someone, please pull his man card.
A new home-run song: The current song is pure party music; the kind found only at Chuck E. Cheese, where you can also find screaming children and expensive games that spit out tickets for cheap, throw-away toys made in China.
No more “Hey, Baby”: DJ Otzi’s cover is the most annoying song ever to be played at a sporting event; even more so when it is played at least 81 times a year right after “God Bless America” during the seventh-inning stretch. There is nothing God or America should like about this song. Notice a trend here? Coors Field caters to the key ticket-purchasing demographic of 0-15 year olds.
Thank you Santa, in advance for these gifts. I will be leaving you a beer and a ballpark pretzel — extra salt — instead of the played out milk-and-cookie routine. I know this list is a stretch, but this city deserves better … at least I think I do.
Follow me on Twitter @CoryWhitmer