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Tag:Joey Votto
Posted on: August 19, 2010 3:21 am
Edited on: August 19, 2010 12:32 pm
 

Reds rebounding well from sweep

So how's that momentum going?

The Cardinals have shown the only "Mo" that matters in baseball is the one wearing pinstripes out of the bullpen.

Since the Cardinals supposedly took control of the National League Central with a sweep in Cincinnati, St. Louis has not only surrendered their two-game division lead, but now find themselves three games behind the Reds.

The Cardinals dropped their fourth straight game on Wednesday, as Milwaukee beat Adam Wainwright 3-2, while Cincinnati won its fifth straight, 11-7 over Arizona despite Joey Votto being scratched with a bad back.

Making things worse, the Cardinals' 1-4 record since sweeping the Reds has come entirely at Busch Stadium, while the Reds swept the Marlins at home and have won their first two games in a nine-game roadtrip. While the Cardinals are 10-5 against the Reds, they're 15-18 against the Cubs, Brewers and Astros. The Reds are 21-6 against those same three NL Central foes.

There's still plenty of baseball to play -- just as there was a week ago when the Cardinals were handed the division by some following their sweep at Great American Ball Park. St. Louis certainly has the starting pitching (or at least top three in the rotation) to win the division and just as last week's sweep didn't win the division for the team, this current streak hasn't lost it for the Cardinals.

It's too easy to look at a specific game or series and take the results and try to extrapolate a much larger meaning. But a 162-game schedule nullifies that.

Some credit needs to go to the Reds and manager Dusty Baker for bouncing back when many buried them. With Wednesday's comeback victory -- the Reds trailed 7-3 in the eighth before coming back for the win -- Cincinnati is now a season-high 18 games over .500 at 69-51. It was also their 35th comeback win this season.

"It was awesome," Reds right fielder Jay Bruce told the Cincinnati Enquirer . "But I can't say I'm surprised. We've been doing it all year."

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.
Posted on: August 19, 2010 3:14 am
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Posted on: August 5, 2010 9:06 pm
Edited on: August 5, 2010 9:10 pm
 

Pirates manager likes Cards in NL Central race


John Russell The Pittsburgh Pirates have played back-to-back to the top two teams in the National League Central, getting swept in St. Louis and winning one of three against the Reds in Pittsburgh.

After seeing both teams up close, Pirates manager John Russell says he likes the Cardinals down the stretch. From the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review 's Rob Biertempfel :
"Because of the experience,” Russell said. “They’ve got a lot of guys who’ve been there and who’ve been through it. They know what to expect. They’ve got two horses in their rotation who’ve been to the playoffs and know what those games are like.”

Russell rated the teams’ bullpens as even. When it comes to bats, he gave Cards sluggers Albert Pujols and Matt Holliday an edge over the Reds’ Joey Votto and Scott Rolen. “Those two (Pujols and Holliday) have consistently shown they can put up great numbers,” Russell said.

Even with Chris Carpenter and Adam Wainwright anchoring the St. Louis rotation, Russell said Cincy’s group could be the better of the two.

“The five guys they run out there are pretty good,” Russell said. “The potential downfall is the two young guys — (Mike) Leake and (Travis) Wood. As they get close, how those guys react when it’s time to make a push for a playoff spot.
Maybe the best reason to like the Cardinals -- St. Louis has nine games remaining against Russell's Pirates to Cincinnati's three. Six of the remaining games between the Pirates and Cardinals are in Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh travels to Cincinnati the second week of September.

The Reds are 8-5 this season against the Pirates and the Cardinals are 5-1.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.



Posted on: August 3, 2010 5:39 pm
Edited on: August 3, 2010 7:01 pm
 

Busy day for DL

Kevin Youkilis With most injuries, you never quite know how bad they are until the next day.

As for last night? It wasn't a real good night for some of baseball's better players.

As was mentioned already, Red Sox first baseman Kevin Youkilis went to the disabled list today, and the news on that injury is a little up in the air.

Youkilis had an MRI this morning that found a torn muscle in his thumb that could require surgery. According to the Boston Globe 's Peter Abraham , doctors are uncertain about the extent of the injury and Youkilis will get a second opinion soon.

"They're searching for some answers because this is, I think, quite rare," Red Sox manager Terry Francona told Abraham and other reporters. "How it happened is a little hard to explain. … In the meantime, there's no way we're going to let him play and take a swing and hurt his career."

Francona said there's a chance that it could scar up and allow Youkilis to return after the 15 days are up.

Ryan Howard Youkilis isn't the only big-time first baseman to go to the disabled list today -- the Phillies placed Ryan Howard on the disabled list with a  sprained left ankle. The team called up John Mayberry Jr. to take his place.

Howard hurt the ankle sliding into second base in Sunday's game in Washington. He went with the team to Florida, but returned to Philadelphia on Monday to get the ankle checked out. With Howard on the DL, Jayson Werth becomes the only Phillie regular not to have visited the DL this season.

It wasn't all bad news for first basemen, as Reds manager Dusty Baker told the Cincinnati Enquirer 's John Fay that Joey Votto (wrist) will return to the lineup for Wednesday afternoon's game against the Pirates. However, the Reds did put starting shortstop Orlando Cabrera on the disabled list with a strained left oblique.

The Reds will replace him in the lineup with Paul Jansih, a superb defensive shortstop who has hit well (.270/.370/.413) in spotty playing time this season. To replace Cabrera on the roster, the Reds called up third baseman Juan Francisco.

As for Monday's most gruesome injury, test on Carlos Santana's left knee showed a high-grade strain of the LCL and hyperextension of the left knee, according to a tweet from the Cleveland Plain Dealer 's Paul Hoynes . Surgery is still a possibility for the Indians' top young player. The Indians also placed Travis Hafner on the DL and called up catcher Lou Marson and starter David Huff.

UPDATE: Hoynes has more on his blog abotu Santana's injury -- Indians trainer Lonnie Soloff says the injury isn't as bad as the Indians feared. "We do feel fortunate," Soloff said.

As for Howard, Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. told reporters, including David Hale of the News Journal , that the team isn't sure how long Howard will be out.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Posted on: July 16, 2010 4:20 pm
Edited on: July 16, 2010 7:43 pm
 

Votto happy to be enemy of Cubs fans


Joey Votto CINCINNATI -- Joey Votto said he was joking when he told a Chicago reporter he didn't like the Cubs following the All-Star Game, but he doesn't mind being the target of Cubs fans boos.

"I think it's kind of fun to play the heel," Votto said.

Following Tuesday night's All-Star Game, Votto was quoted by ESPNChicago.com's Bruce Levine as saying, "I don't like the Cubs. And I'm not going to pat anybody with a Cubs uniform on the back."

Friday, Votto noted he was laughing when he said that and it may not have come over quite right when seen in black and white.

"The shame of it is Marlon and I got along the best on the bench and in the outfield and stuff, I talked to him and I was one of the first people to congratulate him in Chicago [when the All-Star teams were named]," Votto said Friday. "It was definitely taken out of context. I was laughing when I said it. I have the utmost respect for the Cubs in general -- not necessarily for the fans, but …"

Votto laughed after he said that, but the blog Church of Baseball , run by a Reds fan, dug up this video earlier this week in the wake of the Votto-Cubs flap.



The video shows Votto telling a young Cubs fan "I don't sign for Cubs fans."

Votto didn't deny that, either.

"I don't," Votto said, with a laugh. "I try not to. They're in our same division and we play good baseball against them. I think it's kind of fun to play the heel. Not everything has to be friendly, we take it seriously every time we go there. It's not just a game to us, it's our job."

Votto traces his Cub-dislike to 2007, when he was called up in September and watched the Cubs celebrate a division title at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati.

"I still remember that now, I remember them looking at the scoreboard and Cubs fans cheering and everyone in the stands wearing blue," Votto said. "I still remember that and it meant a lot to me. I guess I should probably let it go, but I'm not an easy forgiver."

The Cubs' Byrd didn't seem too worked up about the "controversy" telling MLB.com's Carrie Muskat that he understood Votto's sentiment.

"That's the competitiveness of Joey Votto," Byrd said. "He's an MVP candidate right now, he's going to say what he believes. But at the same time, I don't think any Cub is going to be patting anyone on the Cincinnati Reds on the back during the season. They're the ones in first place and we're chasing them. We're going to have to come after them hard."

Cubs manager Lou Piniella said he understood Votto's statement as well.

"I don't think he likes the Cardinals either," Piniella told Muskat. "I think it's more of an [intradivisional] thing."

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.


Posted on: July 8, 2010 7:33 pm
 

Cincinnati has history of stuffing ballot box

Ford Frick There are plenty of reasons to criticize baseball's Final Vote system, in which the last spots on the All-Star teams are awarded through a last push of fan voting -- with teams pulling out all the stops by forming alliances with other teams, peppering fans with email reminders to vote and players pleading through social media.

The whole thing is starting to feel kind of cheap, and you have to wonder how much of an honor it really is for a guy to know that he's an All-Star because of marketing stunts after the fans, his peers and the manager all had chances to choose him and didn't.

Anyway, the system works for those who work it, and nobody worked it better than the Reds, who helped drum up a record 13.7 million votes for Joey Votto (they even had the GM's daughter holding up a sign outside the Today Show). Votto is by all accounts a swell guy, he has great numbers and we'll get lots of good TV shots of him watching the proceedings in awe.

What's interesting that the ballot box stuffing came from Cincinnati, because this isn't the first time the Queen City has mobilized to get Reds on the All-Star team. In fact, because of Cincinnati, the vote was taken away from the fans between 1958 and 1970.

The fan vote for non-pitching starters was instituted in 1947, and ballots were distributed nationally in newspapers and magazines and submitted by mail. In 1956, a columnist from the Cincinnati Enquirer mounted a huge campaign to get as many Cincinnati players as possible elected. An estimated one-third of all votes cast came from Cincinnati, and five of the eight starting spots on the NL team were filled by Reds. The Reds were a decent team at the time, but not an entire lineup of All-Stars.

The next year, the crush of votes from Cincinnati was even larger, and Reds claimed seven of the eight starting spots. Commissioner Ford Frick (pictured -- doesn't he look like a pleasant fellow?) was furious, and ordered outfielders Gus Bell and Wally Post removed from the starting lineup. For the next 12 years, teams were chosen by players, managers and coaches.

-- David Andriesen

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.


Category: MLB
Posted on: July 8, 2010 9:58 am
Edited on: July 8, 2010 10:03 am
 

Final Vote coming down to final hours

Kevin Youkilis Oh, the suspense!

In another Yankee-Red Sox battle we're being hit over the head with, Nick Swisher holds "the slimmest of leads" over Kevin Youkilis in the American League Final Vote for the All-Star Game, despite nobody making a convincing case for Swisher other than his uniform, based on the latest results released by MLB.com.

In what can only be a desperate attempt by Major League Baseball's website to generate page views (since all voting takes place on the site), MLB.com has seen fit to release a breathless update to the (unlimited) voting that ends today at 4 p.m.

The winner of the final spots will be announced on MLB Network (yay synergy!) at 6 p.m.

Joey Votto still leads the National League voting (funny what leading the league in homers and OPS will do for you), but, the site warns -- without giving any numbers -- Carlos Gonzalez has passed Billy Wagner for third place in the voting. Ryan Zimmerman is still in second. Heath Bell was removed from the ballot when he was placed on the team as a replacement for Yovani Gallardo.

In the American League, it's all Yankees-Red Sox all the time. The release says it's a "virtual tie" between Youkilis (.292/.409/.574 with 17 home runs, 55 RBI) and Swisher (.298/.376/.518 14 HR, 48 RBI, one appearance on "How I Met Your Mother " --  CBS can play the synergy game too!), but not a real tie, because that would mean they're tied, as opposed to a "virtual tie" which goes back to the ol' tie goes to the Yankee rule.

Paul Konerko is in third place in the AL voting, followed by Michael Young and Delmon Young.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.


Posted on: July 6, 2010 3:33 pm
Edited on: July 6, 2010 3:37 pm
 

Youkilis takes lead in 'Final Vote'

Kevin Youkils Apparently we're getting official releases on the All-Star Game Final Vote daily now, and even though it's getting kind of boring, the results are there. And it appears the '75 Series team-up of the Red Sox and Reds is working, as Kevin Youkilis and Joey Votto are the leading vote-getters.

Monday, the teams announced a partnership, asking fans to vote for both players. Youkilis is a Cincinnati native and played at the University of Cincinnati, while Votto has been the cause celebre since Charlie Manuel announced the team.

Both are deserving of the nods, so it's nice to see the fans getting it right again -- although they could still screw it up in the next 48 hours.

Youkilis overtook the Yankees' Nick Swisher in the last 24 hours, while Michael Young, Paul Konerko and Delmon Young trailed. Youkilis is third in the American League in OPS (1.002) and tied for seventh in homers with 17. Konerko is seventh in OPS (.948) and tied for second in home runs with 20.

Votto overtook the National League lead in home runs with two Monday night against the Mets. He now has 21, tied with Toronto's Jose Bautista for the majors' lead. Votto also leads the NL in on-base percentage (.418), slugging (.599) and, naturally, OPS (1.017).

Although vote totals are not released, Votto leads Ryan Zimmerman, Billy Wagner, Carlos Gonzalez and Heath Bell.

At least one of those nominees isn't happy with the attention Votto's gotten for his snub.

"I won't win the final vote," Wagner told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution . "I'm not a fan favorite. ESPN is running promos for Joey Votto, what's that tell you."

Yep, we all know, that great midwest bias -- every time you turn on the TV, it's Cincinnati, Kansas City and Cleveland (well, it is Cleveland, but it has nothing to do with Shin-Soo Choo).

Wagner has 17 saves and has a 1.35 ERA and a .165 opponents' batting average, as well as the sentimental card, as he's announced he's retiring at the end of this season.

As for the Reds-Red Sox partnership, the Reds will wear "Vote Red" and "Vote Votto-Youkilis" shirts for batting practice Wednesday at Citi Field, according to MLB.com's Mark Sheldon . The Reds equipment manager, Rick Stowe, has written "Vote Red" and "Vote Votto" on batting practice balls to remind fans to vote, as well. The Toronto Sun has also joined in the efforts, publishing a "Vote for Votto" campaign page for the Toronto native.

In addition to the Reds stumping for Youkilis, John Kerry is campaigning for the Red Sox first baseman, sending out an email asking his supporters to participate in the vote .

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.



 
 
 
 
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