Mark Reynolds is returning to the Rockies on a minor-league contract with an invite to big-league spring training, according to a report Wednesday by mlb.com writer Thomas Harding. It's nothing new for Reynolds he was in a make-good situation in 2016 and 2017, and both years not only made the team but became the regular first baseman.
It's not likely Reynolds will get a full-time job this season with the Rockies having already signed David Murphy to a two-year, $24 million contract to play first base, but Reynolds’ addition could give the Rockies that veteran bat off the bench that the Rockies were missing at the start of last season. They added Matt Holliday in the final weeks of the 2018 season to fill that void.
Murphy has played more second base than first base in his big-league career, but his better suited for first base, and welcomed the opportunity with the Rockies. The Rockies, meanwhile, have prospects Garrett Hampson and Ryan McMahon in the running for second base job, with the possibility No. 1 ranked prospect Brendan Rodgers could be ready to move to the big leagues at some point in the season.
Rodgers was a first-round pick -- third player selected overall in 2015 -- as a shortstop, but with the presence of Trevor Story at shortstop and Nolan Arenado at third base there is a feeling he could make an easy transition to second base.
The Rockies had interest in re-signing Reynolds a year ago, but he was hoping for a multi-year deal. The market never developed, and Reynolds belatedly signed with the Nationals, and joined their big-league roster on April 17. He appeared in 86 games, hitting .248 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI.
Ten of those RBI came in a July 7 game against the Marlins. He became the 15th player in major-league history to have at least 10 RBI in a game. Jim Bottomley and Mark Whiten share the record with 12 RBI in a game.
In his two years with the Rockies, Reynolds hit a combined .274 with 44 home runs and 150 RBI. He appeared in 118 games in 2016, hitting .292 with 14 home runs and 53 RBI, and hit 30 home runs with 97 RBI and a .267 average in 148 games.
Reynolds has a career 294 home runs, six shy of setting the record for most home runs by a player who never made an All-Star team. Former Angels outfielder Tim Salmon hit 299 home runs in his career.