Joey Votto is the best Cincinnati Reds hitter since at least Joe Morgan. You might argue he’s even better than that (as a hitter only). But either way, he’s one of the best hitters this franchise has ever seen. He currently has the highest OPS+ (which is adjusted for the league and years played) in franchise history at 155. Frank Robinson is second at 150.

With all of that said, the 2018 season was the lowest season when it comes to OPS+ of Joey Votto’s career. His 125 mark matched his rookie season, and his 2014 season when he played half of the season with a knee injury before shutting things down. He was still a well above-average hitter, but when compared to what he’s been, he wasn’t remotely close to that guy. And Joseph Daniel Votto wasn’t satisfied with that at all.

If you’ve been a Reds fan with a pulse for more than a few years, you know that Joey Votto is a guy who works very hard on his swing and approach at the plate. If you have watched how he’s gone about spring training at times in the past, you’ve seen his methodical approach to getting ready for the season in action. Some years he’s taken pitches simply to see more of them and get his eye ready for the season. Other years he’s just flat out raked.

There’s a method to his madness. And it seems that after his 2018 season, he wanted to change up that method. The best hitter some of us have even seen while wearing a Cincinnati Reds uniform began hitting two months before he normally does. He’s going to be a lot further along at the start of the spring than he usually is. Whether or not it’s going to work out, well, that’s unknown. But Joey Votto wasn’t happy with how things went last season. And hopefully that’s bad news for the National League in 2019.

14 Responses

  1. JB WV

    It’s great that the Reds brought Puig and Kemp in to strengthen the offense. But if the Red are going to compete for the playoffs Joey has to be Joey.

  2. WVRedlegs

    When many good athletes lose their “it”, they Don’t get “it” back. Joey Votto doesn’t seem to be one of those kind. He hasn’t lost his “it” yet. He’ll be fine in 2019. I expect him to see some pitches he hasn’t seen in awhile with new batters hitting behind him. More of them too.

    • ToBeDetermined

      His “Hit it” “Hit it” “Hit it”
      yep, trying saying that three or four times. 🙂

  3. Eddiek957

    The reds should bat joey second this year

    • JWAtkinson

      Since the Puig acquisition, I’ve wondered why every lineup projection has Votto still batting third. Winker and Votto aren’t the fastest (/understatement), but I’d still feel pretty good letting them clog the bases for guys like Suarez, Puig, Gennett, Kemp and Senzel

      • Matt Hendley

        And now derick detrick as well it seems, just signed to a minors deal

      • Matt WI

        I’m sure there’s some consideration for starting a game with back to back lefties for some. I wouldn’t be super worried about it given Votto being who he is, but I bet a lot of people default into a L,R,L,R scenario.

  4. Mark Moore

    Saw on MLBTR that the Moose is back in Milwaukee … that gives them another shot at a solid line up. I’m still puzzled at him skipping the QO again this year and taking the risk to sign for less (which he did).

  5. CFD3000

    Based on what I know of Joey Votto’s work ethic and the high standards he has established for himself this doesn’t surprise me at all. If Votto stays healthy I expect a big year from Joey at the plate. And if that inspires Suarez, Winker, Puig, Senzel and Gennett then this could be an excellent year for the Reds offense. I can’t wait.

  6. Oldtimer

    Votto is the best Red since Barry Larkin but few Reds have had their best years from age 35 on.

    Pete Rose maintained his performance from age 35 to 40 but few others did.

    Votto may be the Rose exception.


    Regression ultimately claims us all. JV will prove to be no exception to this…eventually. I too, am hopeful that he will prove to be, as Oldtimer says, the “Rose exception” and maintain his “work ethics and high standards.” Having other more potent bats around him certainly should help, and batting second seems like a normal progression for him at this point.

    Hearing of his early hitting and eagerness to get started is encouraging also. We are all excited to see this season develop, perhaps even beyond our greatest anticipations! The projections for our pitching staff are well above the hot mess we have endured the last few seasons. Man oh man, Baseball is officially back! Not even the commissioner and his meddling can dampen the mounting excitement! Go Reds!