Rockies send Tyler Colvin to Triple-A

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After hitting .290 with 18 home runs, 72 RBI and an .858 OPS with the Rockies in 2012, Tyler Colvin will begin this season in the minor leagues.

According to Thomas Harding of MLB.com, the Rockies announced last night that Colvin was optioned to Triple-A Colorado Springs. The surprising move clears the way for infielders Reid Brignac and Jonathan Herrera to make the Opening Day roster.

Colvin batted just .167 (8-for-48) with 14 strikeouts in 18 games during Cactus League play. While spring training statistics are generally meaningless, the Rockies clearly believe that regular at-bats in the minors will be beneficial. He doesn’t figure to stay down there for long, especially if he gets off to a hot start or the Rockies have an injury.

Colvin, 27, is under contract for $2.275 million this season.