Tucson - Weight and see. Welcome to Todd Helton's experiment this season.
Helton, mindful of critics and eager to rejuvenate his career, underwent a radical physical transformation, bulking up from his sickness-induced 200 pounds to approximately 230. Helton wouldn't divulge his exact weight, but admitted it was higher than 225.
"I feel stronger, but it hasn't translated on the field yet because I am not swinging with 100 percent effort," Helton said. "I am not worried about spring training. Everything is geared for the season."
In years past, Helton has played at about 215 pounds. He dropped 15 pounds last year after contracting a stomach virus that forced him into a hospital and onto the disabled list.
Helton displayed his new strength during batting practice Sunday, repeatedly launching home runs over the right-field fence. He finished with cardio work, wearing an undershirt with cut sleeves that revealed ripped biceps.
Helton has been careful about putting on pounds as a concession to a back injury he has dealt with since 2002. This offseason, he practiced yoga to increase flexibility.
Helton's spring will be watched closely given his importance to the Rockies' lineup and the Red Sox's simmering interest. Rockies ownership said last week that talks are dead with Boston. But they might be revisited this spring because the Red Sox like Helton and Colorado covets payroll flexibility because so many young core players are starting to make more money.