Blog Entry

Reds, Votto agree to 3-year deal

Posted on: January 16, 2011 1:23 pm
Edited on: January 16, 2011 4:58 pm
Joey Votto The Reds have agreed to a three-year deal with National League MVP Joey Votto worth $38 million,'s Mark Sheldon reports .

The Reds avoid arbitration with Votto, buying out all three years of his deal, but Votto doesn't give up any free agent years with the extension. The deal is pending a physical, which is expected to take place on Monday.

Votto, 27, led the National League in on-base percentage (.424) and slugging (.600), and was the overwhelming winner of the National League MVP, getting 31 of 32 first-place votes.

The Reds drafted Votto in the second round of the 2002 draft out of Canada and he made his debut in late 2007 before earning the starting first baseman's job in 2008, when he finished second in Rookie of the Year voting, behind Cubs catcher Geovony Soto.

Votto was arbitration-eligible for the first time this offseason and had been reluctant to discuss a long-term deal.

In December, Votto told reporters he couldn't fathom signing a 10-year deal like Colorado's Troy Tulowitzki.

"I don't know as far as beyond three years, I think it's a real unfair question to ask," Votto said (via Sheldon ). "This is not me saying I don't want to be here. But last year was a difficult year for me. This year was a better year for me. It's really hard for me to think three years ahead, five years ahead, seven years ahead or 10 years ahead. When Tulowitzki signed that 10-year contract, I was blown away. I can't imagine seeing myself 10 years from now saying I want to be here. It's an overwhelming thing to ask a young person like myself and say, 'here's a lot of money, be happy with this over 10 years, deal with it.'"

Votto's new deal will buy out his arbitration-eligible years. As a first-year arbitration-eligible player, the three-year deal will not affect his free agent status, he'll still be a free agent following the 2013 season.

For the small-market Reds, they now have payroll certainty -- they know exactly what they'll be spending for one of the game's best young players of the next three years.

Arbitration numbers are due this week, and it's possible Votto could seek to equal or top Ryan Howard's record $10 million judgement. He will now average more than that over the next three seasons, but with another MVP-type season, Votto could ask for even more.

It's not without risk for Cincinnati -- the team is essentially banking on the fact Votto will improve from his breakout season in 2010, when he hit .324/.424/.600 with 37 home runs and 113 RBI. In 2009, Votto missed chunks of time dealing with depression and panic attacks following the sudden loss of his father. He also suffered with vertigo-like symptoms.

Cincinnati also locked up its other young talent, Jay Bruce, earlier this offseason. Bruce, who was arbitration-eligible as a "Super Two", signed a six-year deal worth $51 million to avoid arbitration.

The Reds, who haven't gone to arbitration with a player since 2004, have three arbitration-eligible players remaining, left-handed reliever Bill Bray and right-handed starters Johnny Cueto and Edinson Volquez.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Since: Dec 8, 2010
Posted on: January 17, 2011 4:14 pm

Reds, Votto agree to 3-year deal

3 years , 10 years , 10 mil , 15 mil , who cares as long as he helps me win my fantasy league again ! Go Big Red ! 

Since: Oct 30, 2007
Posted on: January 17, 2011 7:37 am

Reds, Votto agree to 3-year deal

Votto is not the $$$ chasing kind of guy.

If his next three years are anything close to this past one, he will be able to name his price.  If he continues to remain among the elite, he will eventually chase and get the money of the elite.

Since: Dec 8, 2007
Posted on: January 17, 2011 6:01 am

Reds, Votto agree to 3-year deal

I agree if Joey stays healthy he can be a Beast for 3 years and then sign extensions. Good for you Joey getting this out of the way before spring training.

Since: Jun 12, 2009
Posted on: January 16, 2011 10:10 pm

Reds, Votto agree to 3-year deal

Votto's new deal puts him just above Canada's GDP!

Since: Mar 16, 2009
Posted on: January 16, 2011 10:02 pm

Reds, Votto agree to 3-year deal

Most people are upset at his comment about not wanting to sign a 10 year deal.  I can understand at 27 years old I wanted to see the world.  Who knows baseball might have another rebound and he could become grossly underpaid somewhere around year five or six and then he is stuck with a bad deal.  As a Reds fan I am just happy that for the next three years he is here.  In the 2012 off season I will worry about what his future will be.  Heck he might even sign extensions.

Since: Dec 15, 2006
Posted on: January 16, 2011 9:31 pm

Reds, Votto agree to 3-year deal

BuckBearcat GREAT POST 5 STARS to you !!!!! JOEY is being SMART  IMO because the teams with CAKE have PAID and WILL PAY for their !ST basemen( TEXIERA & GONZALEZ).....JOEY VOTTO gets over 10MIL a year...and goes FREE AGENT after 3.....Texerira will be on the last years of his deal in NY.....So they may play for him.....could play DH as well !!!! I'm sure my REDSOX would be interested as well in 3 years.

Since: Dec 15, 2006
Posted on: January 16, 2011 9:12 pm

Reds, Votto agree to 3-year deal

GREAT post  gave ya 5 stars,,,,,Couldn't agree more...Look @ what my SOX will pay GONZALEZ....and divide by 2........BUT ADRIAN is WORTH the CAKE and the REDS got JOEY for 1/2...GREAT MOVE REDS !!!!!!

Since: Mar 19, 2009
Posted on: January 16, 2011 9:05 pm

Reds, Votto agree to 3-year deal

If as Votto said, he "can't imagine wanting to be here in 10 years", then he can still walk at 30 years old. 

That's not exactly what Votto said.  He didn't say he doesn't think he'll want to be here 10 years from now like your take implies.  It's more like he's implying that he's not sure what the future holds for him and doesn't want to commit to something for 10 years.  He's 26-27 years old.  If he signs for 10 at $15 million a year, he very well could be short-changing himself.  If he has three more monster years, he could be worth $20-$25 million a year.  Why lock yourself in at less than market?  He's played two full seasons as a starter plus a bit more - he wants to wait and see what the future holds.  Yeah, it's a gamble on his part - if things don't pan out and his production suddenly drops off, he won't command as much down the road.  However, if he has two or three more years like 2010, he can pretty much write the number he wants on a check from whomever will pay him.  If he has two more years like 2010, I expect the Reds to try to renegotiate in the winter of 2012/13 and try to lock him up for a longer period of time.  If they don't have success then, I think they try to move him then.

Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: January 16, 2011 6:26 pm

Reds, Votto agree to 3-year deal

Hahaha...okay, Reds fans, I'm not sure why you were up in arms about my comment.  Redsxu3 went as far as to call me an idiot in his reply (by the way, it's spelled "ridiculous", genius).  I'm aware of the fact that Steinbrenner and Epstein have ruined baseball with inflated contracts.  It's true that contracts are on the downside at the moment and there is a certain amount of depth at 1B right now.  However, I find it very difficult to believe that the majority of the clubs in baseball wouldn't be thrilled at the prospect of having Votto on their roster.  I'd also find it very hard to believe that they'd have trouble ponying up much more cash to get a player who just had a MVP season just as he's hitting his peak years in baseball.  I have nothing against the Reds pulling off the deal.  The thing that I found funny was that the previous reports had indicated that they were working so hard towards an extension.  Given the limited information that was offered, it would have indicated that he was demanding far more than what he was signed for.  3 years at $38 million for a player like Votto should have been a no-brainer right from the very start.  Last time I have the gall to support one of your players.  Sheesh, kids....

Since: Sep 20, 2006
Posted on: January 16, 2011 6:21 pm

Reds, Votto agree to 3-year deal

It was a compromise kind of deal...

The Reds pay Votto a little less than his NL MVP worth, have him for a known salary for 3 years, avoiding arbitration, but Votto's free agent opportunity hasn't changed at all. His contrcat expires in his first free agent eligible year. If as Votto said, he "can't imagine wanting to be here in 10 years", then he can still walk at 30 years old. 

At $13 mil a year, Votto will have to play 150 games a year, and put up .300/30/100 numbers to be worth what the Reds paid him, but if he does for the next 3 years, he will certainly be worth much more than that as a free agent. 

Thiis contract does give the Reds 3 years at a fixed salary to either extend his contract, or to trade Votto, if it looks like he's intent on leaving.  

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