Harsh business of baseball hasn’t dimmed Nolan Arenado’s love of the game


SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Occasionally, I’ll watch Nolan Arenado make another incredible play or I’ll talk to him in the clubhouse and I’ll flashback to the bright-eyed kid he used to be.

I’ll wonder how much kid is left inside the 28-year-old man, and I’ll recall one of my favorite Rockies stories.

In 2013, loveable but irascible first basemen Todd Helton was sitting in the visiting team’s clubhouse at Nationals Park when he figured he’d pass on some wisdom to the rookie third baseman. The Rockies had flown into Washington from Toronto the night before and Helton told the wide-eyed Arenado to make sure and check his cellphone bill.

“The charges can get kind of high in Canada,” Helton said.

“Really?” Arenado said. “Then I have to call my dad.”

Helton, confused, asked, “Your dad? Why call your dad?”

Arenado innocently answered, “Yeah, I’m on their family plan, so I have to give them a heads up.”

Helton, both amused and dismayed, said, “Are you kidding me? You are in the big leagues now, kid. Get off the family plan!”

That Arenado is long gone. He’s won seven Gold Gloves, is a perennial all-star, has a chance to become the best all-around…

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