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Arenado in All-Star 3B lead; Story gains ground

MLB.com @harding_at_mlb

DENVER -- The rewards for hard physical work and studiousness off the field are showing up on Rockies shortstop Trevor Story's stat sheet. He entered Monday night's game against the Mets leading the National League with 54 RBIs, was tied for third in home runs with 15 and was third in total bases at 143.

VOTE: 2018 Camping World MLB All-Star Ballot

DENVER -- The rewards for hard physical work and studiousness off the field are showing up on Rockies shortstop Trevor Story's stat sheet. He entered Monday night's game against the Mets leading the National League with 54 RBIs, was tied for third in home runs with 15 and was third in total bases at 143.

VOTE: 2018 Camping World MLB All-Star Ballot

Another number reflects how well he is doing -- 315,532, as in the number of votes he had received as of Monday's Camping World MLB All-Star Ballot Update. He was fourth in the voting, up one spot from last week.

Colorado third baseman Nolan Arenado has 1,124,563 votes to lead at his position, and is well on his way to earning an All-Star start. Story will have a difficult time overtaking the leader at shortstop -- the Giants' Brandon Crawford at 1,120,031 votes. Crawford is followed by the Braves' Dansby Swanson at 568,400 and the Cubs' Addison Russell at 475,091.

The outfielders with the three highest vote totals start, and the Rockies' Charlie Blackmon, at 678,831 votes, is just on the outside. Top three are the Braves' Nick Markakis (1,173,653), the Nationals' Bryce Harper (1,002,696) and the Dodgers' Matt Kemp (925,697).

Given the distance Story must overcome in voting, his best shot at appearing in the Midsummer Classic might be through peer voting for the reserves. Any notice is fine with Story.

Video: COL@TEX: Story lifts a 2-run homer to right-center

"I don't know if other people notice or not, but it's certainly something that matters to me," Story said. "That's a dream of mine, for sure."

Colorado right fielder Carlos Gonzalez campaigned hard for Story on Monday.

"The first time [Story] came up, he made history," Gonzalez said. "He hit, like, 27 home runs in a month [in April 2016, Story hit 10 home runs to tie the White Sox Jose Abreu for the MLB April rookie record]. Everybody was talking about him. He found out that it's baseball and it's not that simple. He continued to work hard. He asked questions. He's one of the closest friends I have in the clubhouse.

"I would be really upset if he doesn't get the opportunity to be in the All-Star Game. He's putting in work. He's pretty much leading or top three in every category as a shortstop. A lot of people forget about the tremendous defense he plays. I'm pulling for him. I've already voted for him as a player. On the player vote, he gets mine, so hopefully all the fans can follow me up."

Fans may cast votes for starters at MLB.com and all 30 club sites -- on computers, tablets and smartphones -- exclusively online using the 2018 Camping World MLB All-Star Ballot until Thursday, July 5, at 9:59 p.m. MT. On smartphones and tablets, fans can also access the ballot via the MLB At Bat and MLB Ballpark mobile apps. Each fan can vote up to five times in any 24-hour period, for a maximum of 35 ballots cast.

Following the announcement of this year's All-Star starters, reserves and pitchers, fans should return to MLB.com and cast their 2018 Camping World MLB All-Star Final Vote for the final player on each league's roster. Then on Tuesday, July 17, while watching the 2018 All-Star Game presented by Mastercard live on FOX, fans may visit MLB.com to submit their choices for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet with the 2018 MLB All-Star Game MVP Vote.

The 89th Midsummer Classic, at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., will be televised nationally by FOX Sports; in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS; and worldwide by partners in more than 180 countries. FOX Deportes will provide Spanish-language coverage in the United States, while ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide exclusive national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network, MLB.com and SiriusXM also will provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information about MLB All-Star Week and to purchase tickets, please visit AllStarGame.com and follow @MLB and @AllStarGame on social media.

Estevez faces hitters
Rockies right-handed reliever Carlos Estevez threw live batting practice at Coors Field on Monday, his first such outing since suffering an elbow sprain in mid-April while with Triple-A Albuquerque.

"Everything is a big step in this situation," said Estevez, who went 8-7 with a 5.36 ERA in 98 appearances 2016-17, and whose absence is felt as the Rockies' bullpen has struggled. "Talking about rehab, that's a big step right there. Finally getting hitters after two months, it's huge."

The Rockies will soon determine when he begins an injury rehab assignment.

Thomas Harding has covered the Rockies since 2000, and for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter and like his Facebook page.

Colorado Rockies