Opening Day Quick Hits

JON GRAY, beginning his second full season in the big leagues, will be the Opening Day starter for the Rockies at Milwaukee on Monday (Noon, MDT). Gray becomes the 18th pitcher to start on Opening Day for the Rockies. Seven pitchers made two Opening Day starts for the Rockies — Kevin Ritz (1996-1997), Darryl Kile (1998-99), Mike Hampton (2001-02), Jason Jennings (2003, 2006), Aaron Cook (2007, 2009), Ubaldo Jimenez (2011-12) and Jorge De La Rosa (2014-16).

Gray will join Jennings, Cook, Jimenez and Jhoulys Chacin (2012) as Opening Day starting pitchers who originally signed with the Rockies.

Gray averaged 9.9 strikeouts per nine innings last season, the sixth best for a rookie. Kerry Wood set the record at 12.6 with the Cubs in 1998 followed by Dwight Gooden, 1984 Mets, 11.4; Hideo Nomo, 1995 Dodgers, 11.1; Yu Darvish, 2012 Rangers, 10.4, and Rick Ankiel, 2000 Cardinals, 10.0.

TODD HELTON holds the Rockies all-time record, starting 16 Opening Day Games. His 16 consecutive starts at first base is an NL record.

Most starts on Opening Day with the Rockies by Position: C Chris Iannetta, 4; 1B Helton, 16; 2B DJ LeMahieu and Mike Lansing 3; 3B: Vinny Castilla (6); SS Troy Tulowitzki (9); LF Carlos Gonzalez (5); CF Charlie Blackmon, Ellis Burks, Dexter Fowler and Preston Wilson (3); RF Larry Walker (7).

LeMahieu is scheduled to make his fourth start at 2B on Monday, and Blackmon is scheduled to make his fourth start in CF.

CARLOS GONZALEZ has a career .471 average on Opening Day, second best among active players. Adam Lind is the leader at .481. Cargo is just ahead of Adrian Gonzalez (.450) and Set Smith 9.423)

THE ROCKIES had an average age of 28 years, 64 days as of Sunday, fifth youngest among the 30 major leagues teams. The Reds are No. 1 at 26 years, 354 days followed by the Padres, 27 years, 7 months; Brewers, 28 years, 15 days and White Sox 28 years, 47 days, according to Stats Inc.

TID BITS: The Rockies will open the franchise’s 25th season on Monday afternoon at Milwaukee (Noon, MDT). … The Rockies will be opening on the road for the sixth year in a row, at Milwaukee for the fourth time in eight years. … The Rockies are 13-11 all-time in season openers. … The Rockies are opening on the road for the sixth year in a row, and the 18th time in their 25 years of existence. … The Rockies were 16-15-2 during spring training. …

Rockies Opening Day Roster

  • Starting Pitchers: RHPs Jon Gray, Tyler Chatwood and Antonio Senzatela; LHPs Tyler Anderson and Kyle Freeland
  • Relievers: RHPs Greg Holland (closer), Carlos Estevez, Jordan Lyles, German Marquez, Scott Oberg and Adam Ottavino; LHPs Mike Dunn and Jake McGee.
  • Catchers: Dustin Garneau, Tony Wolters.
  • Infielders: 1B Mark Reynolds; 2B DJ LeMahieu; 3B Nolan Arenado; SS Trevor Story, Utility Cristhian Adames and Alexi Amarista.
  • Outfielders: LF Gerardo Parra, CF Charlie Blackmon, RF Carlos Gonzalez, OF/1B Stephen Cardullo.
  • Disabled List: RHP Chad Bettis, OF David Dahl, 1B Ian Desmond, RHP Jairo Diaz, C Tom Murphy, RHP Chad Qualls, and LHP Chris Rusin.
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Opening Day a Helton Habit

 

Todd Helton never missed an Opening Day in his big league career. Called up in August 1997, Helton played 16 full seasons — all with the Rockies — and he was the Opening Day starting first baseman for Colorado in all 16 games.

With the fourth Opening Day since his retirement on the horizon, Helton is the subject of this week’s Q&A.

To read the interview go to:

http://m.rockies.mlb.com/news/article/221783412/rockies-todd-helton-reflects-on-opening-day/?topicId=27118374

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