It had to be a bittersweet moment for any longtime follower of the Colorado Rockies.
A tight game from start to finish between Colorado and the New York Mets would inevitably be decided by outstanding glove work in the outfield, followed up by aggressive baserunning that elevated the Mets past the Rocks. The glove and wheels were the product of one man on Tuesday night, a familiar face to Rockies fans: former mainstay Eric Young Jr.
With the bases loaded in the sixth inning, Young robbed Rockies first baseman Todd Helton of a sure hit that would have easily platted two. The diving effort by Young preserved the tie for New York.
Young followed up the defensive masterpiece in the bottom of the eighth inning with his trademark wheels on the bases.Young stood at second base when Juan Lagares hit a chopper to Rockies second baseman D.J. LeMahieu, who couldn’t get the throw to Helton in time for what would have been the third out of the inning.
Young would score from second base in a tremendous all-out effort.
It was an effort that mattered. Anyone that witnessed it knew without question it mattered. After sliding into home plate past the tag of catcher Wilin Rosario, Young jumped to his feet in an emotional celebration that electrified the Citi Field crowd.
It had to be sweet redemption. Certainly not in a malicious way, though, as Young has been nothing but class his entire career.
But Young, whose family’s name has been a part of the Rockies organization for nearly three quarters of the franchise history, was sent to the Mets June 18 in a move that certainly had to hurt. Baseball is a business and sometimes the business of the game can seem unfair or even unjust. Young’s departure from Colorado was a baseball move, one that, at the time, seemed best for the Rockies organization.
Tuesday night was Young’s night for redemption. Anyone that has followed this club for any length of time had to smile – even in defeat – watching the former Rockies fan favorite celebrate his night.
Good for you, EY.