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Known for the hitter-friendliest park in baseball, the Colorado Rockies tried to complement a talented lineup and 82-win team with a stronger pitching staff for the 2001 season.
Mike Hampton signed an eight-year, $121 million pact—the largest in MLB history at the time—and Denny Neagle agreed to a five-year, $51 million deal. Hampton had finished second in American League Cy Young voting in 1999, and Neagle was a two-time All-Star.
Both players struggled in the Mile High air.
Hampton and Neagle each posted an ERA above 5.00, giving up a combined 60 home runs in their 62 starts. Colorado dropped to 21 games below .500 in early August and mustered a 73-89 record.