Todd Helton is one of the most productive home hitters ever

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In the wake of Rockies first baseman Todd Helton announcing that he’s retiring after the season I was curious about just how much his Coors Field-aided home production stands out.

Thanks to Baseball-Reference.com’s amazing Play Index, here are the active leaders in OPS at home:

TODD HELTON       1.048
Albert Pujols     1.014
Matt Holliday      .999
Carlos Gonzalez    .992
Miguel Cabrera     .988

No hitter has been more productive at their home ballparks than Helton and along with Matt Holliday and Carlos Gonzalez three of the top five home OPS totals belong to current or former Rockies. On the other hand, for career OPS on the road among active players Helton ranks 24th at .856–nearly 200 points below his home mark–and Holliday and Gonzalez rank 37th and 101st.

And here are the all-time leaders in home OPS:

Babe Ruth         1.184
Ted Williams      1.148
Hank Greenberg    1.121
Jimmie Foxx       1.116
Larry Walker      1.068
Barry Bonds       1.067
Lou Gehrig        1.056
TODD HELTON       1.048
Rogers Hornsby    1.032

That’s basically a list of the greatest hitters of all time, plus two really, really good hitters who played a long time with Coors Field as their home ballpark.

Jim Crane thought the heat over sign-stealing would blow over by spring training

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The Astros’ sign-stealing story broke in November, a steady drumbeat of coverage of it lasted through December and into January, when Rob Manfred’s report came out about it. The report was damning and, in its wake, Houston’s manager and general manger were both suspended and then fired.

After that a steady stream of media reports came out which not only made the whole affair seem even worse than Manfred’s report suggested, but which also suggested that, on some level, Major League Baseball had bungled it all and it was even worse than it had first seemed.

Rather than Manfred and the Astros putting this all behind them, the story grew. As it grew, both the Red Sox and Mets fired their managers and, in a few isolated media appearances, Astros’ players seemed ill-prepared for questions on it all. Once spring training began the Astros made even worse public appearances and, for the past week and change, each day has given us a new player or three angrily speaking out about how mad they are at the Astros and how poorly they’ve handled all of this.

Why have they handled it so poorly? As always, look to poor leadership:

Guess not.

In other news, Crane was — and I am not making this up — recently named the Houston Sports Executive of the Year. An award he has totally, totally earned, right?