It was one of those moments that creates animosity from opponents.

Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki barked orders and shouted encouragement during fielding drills 12 days ago, cementing his reputation that he's too much.

Too loud, too confident, too intense.

"It's not fake," Tulowitzki said. "This is who I am and how I've always wanted to express myself."

Last week, Tulowitzki talked candidly about how, for the first time, this "really feels like my team." This was notable for two seasons: First baseman Todd Helton passed the baton, and Tulo willingly took it.

Let's be honest: Players of Tulo's stature often surround themselves with yes people. They are told they are great and live in a self-contained orb of stats, sports cars and beauty queens. The team becomes an annoyance.

Tulowitzki agonized over last season's mess. He was an all-star, won another Gold Glove and hit 30 home runs, but it rang hollow without October. This offseason he spoke at length with teammate Jason Giambi about how to improve his leadership. Helton then took the important step of pulling Tulo aside and clearing a path for the 27-year-old to take on a bigger role.