04/22/12 2:22 PM ET
Extra work before season paying off for Colvin
By Jordan Schelling / Special to MLB.com
After a breakout year in 2010, Colvin's production dropped off last season with the Cubs. However, over his first 10 games and 26 at-bats with the Rockies, Colvin batted .346 with a home run and five RBIs.
Including Sunday against the Brewers, Colvin had started six of the Rockies' first 15 contests. He batted in the No. 2 hole in the finale against Milwaukee, a spot where his numbers have not been particularly impressive in his career. Colvin has just eight hits in 59 career at-bats batting second, with a slash line of .136/.164/.237.
Even so, it's a spot where manager Jim Tracy likes his bat.
"He handles the bat extremely well," Tracy said. "Tyler Colvin's a guy you can put runners in motion with, and he's going to get a good swing off and put the ball in play.
"This is also a bat that you have to respect from a depth standpoint and not cheat too much to the point where if there's multiple runners, he's going to burn you and drive a ball over your head. He has that capability, he makes those outfielders stay honest that way."
Colvin also has been a valuable and versatile defender, having already played each of the three outfield positions and first base at least once each. His start Friday night gave right fielder Michael Cuddyer an extra day off to rest his bruised left big toe, while Dexter Fowler got a day off Sunday.
Tracy said the Rockies brought Colvin in two months before Spring Training to get a jump on working with the young outfielder. Colvin came to the Rockies in a trade with the Cubs in December.
"We got very proactive on this one," Tracy said. "There were some things that we saw on film that we strongly felt had to be cleaned up, that we felt like, 'This is the big reason why he took a major step backward in 2011, in relation to where he was in 2010.'
"We wanted to get started and give him the opportunity to take the information home with him, knowing he still had eight weeks to go, rather than vice versa."
Young's speed helping swing games for Rox
MILWAUKEE -- He's started just one game this season, but Eric Young Jr. has been an integral part of the Rockies' success.
"He's a weapon," manager Jim Tracy said. "And he has embraced the role that he has right now."
Young has played in 12 of Colorado's first 14 games, showing an excellent approach at the plate as a pinch-hitter, and even better skills on the basepaths.
In fact, Young's baserunning was key in the Rockies' victory on Opening Day, and again Friday when they took the series opener from the Brewers at Miller Park. Both situations involved the outfielder advancing following errors on pickoff attempts and coming around to score go-ahead runs.
Young drew a big leadoff walk Saturday night in the sixth inning, which he followed up by stealing second and scoring a game-tying run on a groundout two batters later. In his fourth-year as a utility player for the Rockies, Young has the freedom to steal whenever he sees the right opportunity to do so.
"He has done just an absolute fantastic job in his role on this ballclub," Tracy said. "A guy with that kind of speed that's part of his game, that works on things like that, why would I sit over here and guess when he can stand there and see for himself and know if he can or can't get a jump and take advantage of the situation?
"You let the light be green. Don't go through the intersection if it goes to caution or red and cause a bad accident, and get to second. Simple as that. That's what he does. He's been absolutely terrific."
Cuddyer made sure to track Humber's perfecto
MILWAUKEE -- Fans across the nation tuned in Saturday evening to catch the end of the White Sox game at Seattle, as Philip Humber completed the 21st perfect game in Major League history.
In the visitor's clubhouse at Miller Park, the Rockies were watching as well. Right fielder Michael Cuddyer looked on with particular interest, being Humber's former teammate.
"It's unbelievable," Cuddyer said. "What's even more amazing is the White Sox have 18 no-hitters. It's incredible."
Cuddyer played with Humber briefly during the 2008-09 seasons, when Humber pitched 20 2/3 innings in 13 relief appearances for the Twins.
Did Cuddyer ever see perfect-game type stuff out of Humber?
"Well, perfect games, obviously you've got to have good stuff, but a lot of things also have to go your way," Cuddyer said, "So I think [Saturday] was his day. I didn't see the whole game, but it was definitely his day. That's for sure."
While he's never been involved personally in a perfect game, Cuddyer was in right field for the Twins on May 3 last year, when Francisco Liriano no-hit the White Sox.
Cuddyer reflected on what it's like being a part of a game like that.
"A lot of excitement," Cuddyer said. "During that ninth inning, you're more nervous as a defensive player than the pitcher is, especially in a perfect game. Because if you mess it up, then you messed it up for him. Not you or for the team. It's nerve-wracking."
Jordan Schelling is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.