Todd Helton collects 2,500th career hit

Dustin Bradford

Helton has the fifth-most hits among active major-leaguers.

Colorado Rockies first baseman Todd Helton recorded the 2,500 hit of his career on Sunday, hitting a line drive double down the third base line against the Cincinnati Reds in the bottom of the seventh inning.

The 40-year-old ranks 96th on the all-time hit list, trailing Jimmy Ryan for No. 95 by 13 hits. Helton has the fifth most hits amongst active major-leaguers, behind Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, Ichiro Suzuki and Manny Ramirez.

The first baseman had an impressive five-season peak, averaging 6.9 WAR per season from 2000-2004. Helton has been inconsistent since 2008, but provided the Rockies with solid offense value as recently as 2011, when he hit .302/.385/.466. The veteran has had a disappointing 2013 campaign, entering Sunday batting .252/.319/.404.

Helton's contract will expire at the end of the 2013 and he will likely retire at the end of the year; he told Jerry Crasnick of ESPN that it "would be a pretty good guess" to assume that this will be his final season in the big leagues.

Helton has been with the Rockies for all 17 seasons of his major-league career, and is franchise leader for many offensive statistical categories, including most hits (2,500), doubles (584), home runs (365), walks (1,329), and runs batted in (1,393).

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