When long-time Colorado Rockies' first baseman Todd Helton went down in August with a torn labrum in his left hip, it was unknown whether he would be able to rebound in time to play through the final year of his contract with the club.
The 39-year-old wanted to return in 2013, but he was unsure how his surgically-repaired hip would heal and could not commit until testing his leg for several months. Now exactly five months separated from his surgery, Helton believes that he is in good health and is ready to go out with a final hurrah, reports Troy Renck of the Denver Post:
There was no epiphany. Todd Helton just followed his body's lead and listened to his head. Three months of workouts and recent batting practice told him that his surgically-repaired left hip was healed...
"I am back baby," Helton said with a laugh.
The 2013 season will be the 17th of Helton's stellar MLB career. While his power numbers have dwindled in recent years, he still has the knack for getting on base and has the benefit of playing half his games in Coors Field.
The lefty slugger is a career .320/.419/.545 hitter with 354 home runs and 570 doubles, and will have a great case for the Hall of Fame when his name comes up on the 2019 ballot.