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Nolan Arenado, Rockies unlikely to reach extension this spring

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The Rockies don’t appear to be in any rush to extend perennial Gold Glove winner Nolan Arenado, the third baseman said Sunday. Arenado told reporters that he doesn’t see any extension talks resuming until the 2018 season concludes, adding, “We have a good team and our focus is on winning — as it should be — and that’s what everyone wants.”

The 26-year-old infielder is slated to remain under team control through 2019, so there’s no pressure to get a deal done right away. Still, it makes sense to lock up a talent like Arenado’s before he hits free agency in 2020. Over five seasons with the club, he’s proven his prowess time and again, netting three All-Star nominations, five Gold Glove awards and consideration for both Rookie of the Year and MVP. He slashed .309/.373/.586 with 37 home runs and an NL-best 27 doubles in 680 plate appearances last year, and FanGraphs ranked his defense at the hot corner as third-best in the league in 2017.

Arenado is currently finishing off the tail end of the two-year, $29.5 million contract he signed with the club last January. He’ll receive a $17.5 million paycheck in 2018 and enter arbitration in advance of the 2019 season. While another season of Arenado’s .300+ average, 5.0+ fWAR ways could give the Rockies more peace of mind as they contemplate an expensive long-term arrangement, it could also give the All-Star third baseman more incentive to test free agency in the years to come.

Todd Helton cited for DUI following a crash

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Former All-Star first baseman Todd Helton has been charged with driving under the influence after a single-car accident in Knoxville, Tennessee.

According to the sheriff’s report, Helton’s car struck a telephone pole just before 6PM on March 18. He was not seriously injured, but was taken to the hospital for observation. Helton told deputies that he had taken an Ambien a few hours earlier. There was a cup in Helton’s car that “had the odor of an alcoholic beverage.”

Helton’s lawyer says that Helton has entered a treatment program. This was his second DUI arrest in the past six years. He was arrested in Colorado in 2013 while on the disabled list during his final season playing for the Colorado Rockies. He retired that year.

Helton, a five-time All-Star, played for the Rockies from 1997 through 2013, winning three Gold Gloves and collecting 2,519 hits and 369 homers. In 2000 he led the league in batting average, on-base percentage, slugging percentage, RBI, doubles, total bases and hits.