08/22/2008 1:37 PM ET
@-bat music: Colorado Rockies
A little bit of everything in the Mile High City
By Doug Miller and Jeff Birnbaum / MLB.com
The Colorado Rockies made it all the way to the World Series last year, riding the wave of 21 wins in 22 games and storming through the first two rounds of the playoffs in scintillating sweeps. Injuries have rendered this year less magical, but the clubhouse is still full of music fans who can occasionally glean a little motivation from a good tune.
There's a little bit of everything on the Rockies' personal playlists, from country music to hip-hop to metal to reggaeton, and maybe this eclectic mix is inspired by manager Clint Hurdle, who's known to have a huge, varied CD collection.
MLB.com/Entertainment has been getting to the bottom of the Major League tradition of walk-up music all season long by going from clubhouse to clubhouse and soliciting cutting-edge commentary from the players, the organizational brass, and some of the best music critics in the business. Song choices will change over the course of the 2008 campaign for various -- and often superstitious -- reasons, but rest assured that we'll feature the songs straight from the players' plate play lists at press time.
Here are the tunes the Rockies rake to:
Clint Barmes, IF
Song: "Back From Where I Come From" by Kenny Chesney
Barmes: "Country music's my favorite, and that was the one they gave me in '05 when I started the season. I like the song, and it kind of grew on me that year. I had some success early, so I never changed it."
Critic commentary: "This is. The slowest. Kenny Chesney. Song. Ever. Clint! For the love of all that is holy! Why you wants to be putting the crowd to sleepytime? The air is thin enough up there! Switch it up: 'Living in Fast Forward,' maybe, or 'Never Wanted Nothing More.' That way you keep your Kenny, but don't lose your audience." --Whitney Pastorek, Senior Writer, Entertainment Weekly
Garrett Atkins, 1B
Song: "The Way I Are" by Timbaland
Atkins: "Spilly (Ryan Spilborghs) introduced me to it, and people seemed to like it, so I stuck with it. I liked the beat and the intro, and kind of went with it. I'm not real good at picking out songs to come up to bat with, so I let the other guys help me out."
Critic commentary: "What's funny about this is that Timbaland might have, in fact, used Garrett's would-be namesake diet to help slim down and bulk up in recent months."--Kenny Herzog, music/pop culture critic
Brad Hawpe, RF
Song: "Rockstar" by Nickelback
Hawpe: "I picked it a while back -- a year or two ago. It was just a song I heard at the time. There's nothing too big to that. I've been meaning to change it, but I haven't had time to think of anything else."
Critic commentary: "As perhaps the only working member of the current music press who will admit to a fascination with and begrudging fondness for Nickelback (50 million derivative rock fans can't be wrong?), I applaud Brad for putting this out there. But again, 'Rockstar' is hardly the band's most energetic track; 'Animals,' for example, is way more pumped up." --Whitney Pastorek, Senior Writer, Entertainment Weekly
Ian Stewart, 3B
Song: "Figure.09" by Linkin Park
Stewart: "I didn't pick the song. It was just the one they gave me when I came up here, but I kind of like the way it starts."
Critic commentary: "I suppose the kids these days aren't too keen about that 'Love Potion' of the same numerical appointment." --Kenny Herzog, music/pop culture critic
Troy Tulowitzki, SS
Song: "Gimme More" by Britney Spears
Tulowitzki: "We always played it in the locker room and stuff, and everybody liked it, so I decided to make it my song. It was 'I'm A Flirt' by R. Kelly, but I changed it earlier (this season) because I was (slumping). Now I've got a couple hits with this one, so I'm just sticking with it. I don't really like Britney Spears except for this song."
Critic commentary: "Really, Troy? Really. I mean: seriously?"--Whitney Pastorek, Senior Writer, Entertainment Weekly
Jeff Baker, 2B
Song: "GZ and Hustlas" by Snoop Dogg
Baker: "I like the bass line in it. I just like old-school rap -- Snoop and Dre and all those guys, man. I enjoy listening to that."
Critic commentary: "Despite the fact that Baker bears closer resemblance to New York sports reporter Chris Cotter than one of Snoop's posse, it's a motivating enough piece of music to come up and bash to." --Kenny Herzog, music/pop culture critic
Yorvit Torrealba, C
Song: "The Anthem" by Pitbull featuring Lil' Jon
Torrealba: "I'm more of a reggaeton, hip-hop guy. The rhythm gets me going. It has a good bass on it. You want a song that when you listen to it, it gets you excited and lets you know you can do this."
Critic commentary: "Yeah, it's less important what Pitbull (and his 'Yo!'-ing friend Lil' Jon) are doing here; it's the sample of Rune's 'Calabria' -- those squonking horns in the background -- that make this track work. Added bonus: a good portion of the Colorado crowd will recognize this as, 'That song from the Target commercial where the girls dance while decorating their dorm rooms.'" --Whitney Pastorek, Senior Writer, Entertainment Weekly
Doug Miller is a Senior Writer for MLB.com/Entertainment. Jeff Birnbaum is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.