With a new collective bargaining agreement now in place the owners have lifted the lockout and while players have to report by Sunday, they can show up early now if they would like. Cincinnati Reds first baseman Joey Votto did just that, arriving on Friday afternoon in Goodyear at the Reds complex.
“I feel good,” Votto said. “(I’m) Looking forward to playing.”
This spring is going to be a little bit different than a normal one. Things are going to be a bit more compact in terms of the time frame between arrival, spring training games, and then the start of the regular season.
“No, I don’t think so,” said Votto when asked about if the short spring would effect him. “I think in 2020 when we had the abbreviated spring training the real challenge to me was a lack of competition. We were competing against ourselves as opposed to being in this complex and being able to compete against other teams. So I think the abbreviated spring training may effect some people, so I can’t speak for everyone, but I think I’ll be ok.”
Last season saw the Reds contend for the wild card spot most of the season, but a late season winning streak by the St. Louis Cardinals overtook Cincinnati and pushed them out of the playoffs. While the team isn’t exactly the same as it was last year, at least as of now, most of the team is returning.
“We competed really well last year. We have to graduate from there.”
Over at The Athletic there’s a long interview with Joey Votto from Zach Buchanan. If you’ve got a subscription there, here’s the link to check that out.
Joey Votto already got some work in. Here he is taking some swings.
Early arrivals to Cincinnati Reds camp
Obviously you know that Joey Votto has arrived by now, but he’s not the only player to show up early. Starting pitcher Tyler Mahle, relief pitcher Luis Cessa, and relief pitcher Art Warren also showed up in Goodyear this afternoon.
New additions to big league camp
Two new players will be in big league camp when it gets started. Outfielder Ronnie Dawson and shortstop Matt McLain have been given non-roster invites to camp by the team. Both players had been in minor league camp with the team. McLain was the Reds 1st round draft pick last summer and is already a Top 100 prospect in baseball on several of the national lists.