Reds' Joey Votto: Early season slump continues

Votto went 0-for-2 but drew two walks and scored a run in Friday's win over the Giants. He's hitting .206/.333/.333 in 150 plate appearances so far this season, despite hitting the ball with the same exit velocity as he has in the last two seasons, Mark Sheldon of reports.

Votto's hard-hit rate is actually up to 36.1 percent, but he's also striking out 23.4 percent of the time, well above his previous rates. He had two hard-hit balls in the no-hitter by Mike Fiers earlier in the week, including a possible home run stolen by Ramon Laureano. "I really like how I've swung the bat in May, despite getting very few results," he said. "Sometimes that's how the luck goes. I felt I swung the bat very poorly at the very beginning of the year. I started transitioning to what I feel is an everyday, repeatable approach."

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