Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 9/2/13
Thunder rolled late Sunday afternoon in LoDo and shook Coors Field to its core. In the seventh inning of the Rockies' 7-4 victory over the Cincinnati Reds Todd Helton scorched a 3-2 pitch off reliever Curtis Partch for a double. It was not just any double. It was the 2500th hit of his big-league career making him just the 96th player in major-league history to touch that milestone. After the deed was done the 40-year-old Helton stood on second base let the cheers from a crowd of 30954 wash over him and then took off his batting helmet to acknowledge the standing ovation. The victory gave the Rockies a 2-1 series win over the Reds who entered the day as the leader for the National League's final wild-card spot. It was perfectly fitting that Helton one of the most accomplished hitters of his generation would reach the milestone on a 3-2 pitch and that it would be an opposite-field double down the left-field line. Since he made his rookie debut in 1997 opposite-field doubles have been a Helton trademark. Helton's double was his 584th moving him past Hall of Famer Robin Yount into sole possession of 17th place. Helton is the Rockies' career leader in nearly every hitting category including hits home runs doubles and RBIs. "It's really really hard to be that good for that long" said right fielder Michael Cuddyer who went 4-for-4 with three RBIs and was a triple short of the cycle. "People from afar can appreciate it but guys who play this game realize how hard it is to sustain that level of success for that long. I mean only 96 people have ever done it." When asked on Saturday about Helton's pending milestone manager Walt Weiss said: "It basically comes down to this: You've got to be really good for a really long time. Todd for his whole career has put his head down and worked. That's what I most respect about him. "There's not a lot of fanfare or hoopla with Todd. He just shows up and works. He's been grinding for 17 years and he's had a hell of a career. This guy has given this franchise credibility." Helton was 0-for-2 on the day when he came to the plate in the seventh a moment after Cuddyer hit a solo homer to give the Rockies a 7-2 lead. Helton had been intentionally walked in the fifth much to the consternation of a crowd that booed lustily.
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