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Black, Rox: Reynolds deserves Final Vote win

Slugger leads Colorado in homers and has 61 RBIs entering Monday
MLB.com

DENVER -- When the Rockies signed Mark Reynolds in the offseason, an All-Star-caliber season wasn't the plan.

Reynolds has certainly made his case for the Midsummer Classic at the plate this season, though, entering Monday night's game against the Reds hitting .286/.373/.527, leading the Rockies with 19 home runs and ranking among the league leaders in RBIs (61) and OPS (.900). But Reynolds was supposed to fill a bench role at first base, sitting behind prized free-agent signing Ian Desmond.

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DENVER -- When the Rockies signed Mark Reynolds in the offseason, an All-Star-caliber season wasn't the plan.

Reynolds has certainly made his case for the Midsummer Classic at the plate this season, though, entering Monday night's game against the Reds hitting .286/.373/.527, leading the Rockies with 19 home runs and ranking among the league leaders in RBIs (61) and OPS (.900). But Reynolds was supposed to fill a bench role at first base, sitting behind prized free-agent signing Ian Desmond.

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Now, Reynolds is one of five National League sluggers appearing on the 2017 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Final Vote ballot. He is competing with Miami first baseman Justin Bour, Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant, Nationals third baseman Anthony Rendon and Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner for the NL's last roster spot.

:: Complete All-Star Game coverage ::

"Here's a guy that signed with us after we'd signed Desmond to play first base," manager Bud Black said. "What it told me, and he's said this publicly, is that he wanted to come back here, he wanted to be a Rockie, he liked what was going on … and as we know, you never know how a season's going to play out."

Fans can vote for Reynolds via text message up to 35 times per phone until Thursday's deadline. To vote for Reynolds, text N4 to 89269. Message and data rates may apply. Text "STOP" to end and "HELP" for information. Voting ends at 2 p.m. MT on Thursday.

Fans can also show their support for Reynolds by tweeting #BeLikeMark, and from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. MT on Thursday, any tweet that includes #BeLikeMark will count toward his vote total.

Extensive coverage throughout the Final Vote will be provided by MLB Network and MLB.com, including interviews with the candidates, frequent updates, heat maps indicating where votes are being cast for each candidate, news on player and club campaigns, and a running countdown clock leading up to the announcement.

• Interactive map: Where are the votes coming from?

Video: Reynolds discusses being on ASG Final Vote Ballot

Desmond broke his left hand in spring training on a hit by pitch and missed most of April, opening the door for Reynolds to earn an everyday role at first base. When Desmond returned, Reynolds' was too hot to bench, and Desmond has transitioned to playing mostly in the outfield.

Reynolds said he was fortunate to "not only get playing time, but to be able to produce, to have the confidence of the coaches to throw me in there every day, and play the game.

"No one wants to sit on the bench, which is something that I signed here to do, but fortunately, I was able to take advantage of the opportunities and go out and play solid ball," Reynolds said.

Tweet from @MaxGelman: Charlie Blackmon is all aboard the Mark Reynolds train for the Final Vote. #Rockies pic.twitter.com/qithbimkHY

If selected, Reynolds would join a franchise-record four teammates in Miami: Nolan Arenado, Charlie Blackmon, DJ LeMahieu and Greg Holland. The Rockies had sent three All-Stars seven times in the past, but never four. Now they have a chance for five.

Four Rockies named NL All-Stars

Video: Arenado, Blackmon, Holland, LeMahieu get All-Star nod

Reynolds also made the Final Vote in 2009 while with the D-backs, but lost to Phillies outfielder Shane Victorino. If selected this season, it would ensure the Rockies 1-4 hitters will be in Miami.

No Rockies player seemed more enthusiastic about voting Reynolds in than outfielder Carlos Gonzalez, who said Reynolds "should already be on the team." A three-time All-Star himself, Gonzalez did not make the team this season but wants Reynolds to get his first appearance in the game.

"He's top 10 in RBIs. He's been tremendous for us, defensively and offensively," Gonzalez said. "I think he deserves it."

Reynolds spent part of the 2013 season the the Yankees, who have an American League Final Vote candidate in Didi Gregorius. The Rockies and Yankees are teaming up on social media, encouraging their respective fanbase to vote for both Reynolds and Gregorius.

Tweet from @Rockies: Good morning! Ready to rock #FinalVote this week?When you vote Mark, vote @DidiG18: https://t.co/UMDhf64z3G#BeLikeMark #SirDidi4Sure pic.twitter.com/VCmEjZ4o14

Fans can cast ballots for the 2017 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Final Vote on MLB.com, Club sites and their mobile devices until 2 p.m. MT on Thursday. The winners, as chosen exclusively by online fan voting totals, will then be announced during "MLB Tonight" live on MLB Network and MLB.com at 4 p.m. Extensive coverage throughout the Final Vote will be provided by MLB Network and MLB.com, including interviews with the candidates, frequent updates, heat maps indicating where votes are being cast for each candidate, news on player and club campaigns, and a running countdown clock leading up to the announcement.

Now in its 16th season, with more than 680 million votes cast, the Final Vote again will include social votes on the last day of balloting, as Twitter support for the 10 candidates over the final six hours of balloting will count toward their vote totals. From 8 a.m.-2 p.m. MT on Thursday, any tweet that includes a designated player hashtag will be tabulated as part of the official vote total used to determine the winners.

On Tuesday, July 11, at 5:30 p.m. MT, tune in to the 2017 All-Star Game presented by Mastercard live on FOX, and during the game visit MLB.com to submit your choice for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet via the 2017 MLB All-Star Game MVP Vote. The 88th All-Star Game, in Miami, will be televised nationally by FOX, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 160 countries via MLB International's independent feed. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB.com, MLB Network and SiriusXM will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com.

Max Gelman is a reporter for MLB.com based in Denver.

Colorado Rockies, Mark Reynolds