Former Colorado Rockies Owner Jerry McMorris Passes Away

DENVER, CO - MAY 6: A general view from the press box shows starting pitcher Juan Nicasio #44 of the Colorado Rockies delivers against the Atlanta Braves at Coors Field on May 6, 2012 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)

The man who helped save baseball in Colorado died on Tuesday.

Former Colorado Rockies owner Jerry McMorris died on Tuesday; he was 71 years old.

McMorris was instrumental in establishing the Rockies in Denver -- when the initial ownership group fell apart, it was McMorris who stepped up with the financial investment needed to keep Major League Baseball from pulling the plug on the expansion franchise.

Current Rockies owner Dick Monfort commented on the news of McMorris' death Tuesday:

"It's a very sad day for the Rockies and for his family," Rockies owner Dick Monfort said.

McMorris had waged a lengthy battle with pancreatic cancer.

"Jerry was a very competitive and tough-willed person and he fought this disease longer than most people could," Monfort said.

McMorris is survived by his wife, two children and five grandchildren.

For updates, stay tuned to SB Nation Denver. For more coverage of the Colorado Rockies, head over to Purple Row. For more from around Major League Baseball, visit Baseball Nation.

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