Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 1/11/13
Colorado Rockies first baseman Todd Helton, who missed considerable time last season, is healthy, working out regularly and doing baseball activities. Helton, who turns 40 in August, played just 69 games in 2012, the fewest in any of his 15 full major league seasons. He underwent surgery Aug. 10 to repair a torn right hip labrum. Helton took batting practice for the second time Jan. 8 and came away very encouraged. While he's not the run-producer he once was, Helton can still make pitchers work with his ability to fight off good pitches and prolong his at-bats. He can still get on base regularly and can still play outstanding defense. "I worked with Pat Burgess, who is our bullpen catcher but who is really good (at throwing batting practice)," Helton told MLB.com. "I got to the point where I was seeing the ball where it was pitched. I could hit it hard. It was a good feeling. I kept telling him, 'Wow, that was a lot of fun.'" Last season, Helton hit .238 with seven homers and 37 RBI. He went on the disabled list at the All-Star break and played in just six games, the last on Aug. 5, after being activated July 27. In 2013, Helton expects to play first base regularly and not be a pinch hitter, designated hitter and occasional starter at first base -- the role Jason Giambi filled with the Rockies the past three seasons. But Helton also realizes that for his sake and for that of the team, he must be open with manager Walt Weiss about how he feels. The Rockies do have first base options in Michael Cuddyer, Jordan Pacheco and Tyler Colvin. "I'm not out to just say, 'I'm the first baseman,' and be a detriment to the team," Helton said. "I think I'll know if that's the case. Hopefully I'm not blinded by anything. I expect to go out and help the team. Cuddyer is an established major league player who is in the prime of his career. Pacheco is an up-and-coming star who sprays the ball all over the field and is never off-balance at the plate. Colvin just keeps getting better. Those guys can do fine." Helton, who made his debut with the Rockies in August 1997 and has $5 million remaining on the final year of his contract, said his goal "is to get through the dadgum season." But before he started hitting, he devoted himself to necessary rehab exercises and made the decision he wants to gear up for the grind of another season. "It's not the actual games that I had to decide I wanted to do," Helton said. "Everyone wants to play those. It's the travel, talking to you guys (in the media), the meetings, the time away from family -- those things. I don't think as you get older, the love for the game dies any."
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

What we learned from the New England Patriots 2017 draft

Washington Wizards: First round evaluation and second round expectations

Jim Harbaugh wants to take Michigan to South Africa or Brazil next

New York Rangers play football with the puck before Game 2 against the Ottawa Senators

Top 10 takeaways from the 2017 NFL Draft

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Mitchell Trubisky booed at Celtics-Bulls game, for some reason

Larry Bird's sudden exit adds to uncertainty surrounding Paul George, Pacers

Nationals Adam Eaton out for season with torn ACL

WATCH: Isaiah Thomas talks trash about Bulls on court during Game 6

Jets WR Devin Smith to miss all of 2017 with torn ACL

WATCH: Seahawks use scuba diver to announce 2017 NFL Draft pick

The 'Beast Mode as a parting gift' quiz

Best of Yardbarker: Don't sleep on the Stanley Cup Playoffs

Our favorite undrafted players of all time

Everything you need for the 2017 NFL Draft

Kicking it: Orlando surges while the Galaxy struggles

Three Up, Three Down: Madison Bumgarner gets grounded

Box Score 4/28: NFL Draft gets younger every year

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

The 'NFL Draft Day is finally upon us' quiz

Most memorable 'NFL Draft weekend drama' stories

Stanley Cup Playoffs: Eastern rivalries take center stage

Marshawn Lynch gives an already-spurned city hometown appeal

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Best of Yardbarker: Don't sleep on the Stanley Cup Playoffs

The 'Beast Mode as a parting gift' quiz

Everything you need for the 2017 NFL Draft

Our favorite undrafted players of all time

Kicking it: Orlando surges while the Galaxy struggles

Three Up, Three Down: Madison Bumgarner gets grounded

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

The 'NFL Draft Day is finally upon us' quiz

Most memorable 'NFL Draft weekend drama' stories

Stanley Cup Playoffs: Eastern rivalries take center stage

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker