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Votto will stay at first base

The Sports Xchange

Reds manager Dusty Baker emphasizes defense, so he wasn't about to endorse moving first baseman Joey Votto to left field to open a spot for Yonder Alonso.

"You don't know if Votto can play left field," Baker said before the Reds' 3-1 loss to the Washington Nationals. "You just can't stick anyone in left field. I played all three of them. Left field is the hardest to play... Everybody can hit the ball hard to left field."

Baker does know that Votto can play first. Votto was voted by National League managers as the league's best defensive first baseman in a Baseball America poll.

That is the result of hard work.

"He works as hard as any first baseman I've seen," Baker said. "...He is the MVP at first base."

Alonso is considered average to below-average as a first baseman.

"How would that work if Joey ends up average to below-average in left?" Baker said. "You see the importance of defense."

Copyright (C) 2011 The Sports Xchange. All Rights Reserved.


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