Through 2½ half years as a professional, hitting has come somewhat easily to Votto.
“That’s what I take pride in,” he said. “I’m kind of working on the smaller things so I can be a better player, but I’m trying not to take away from what I’m already able to do. My calling card would be my bat, that’s why I’m here, that’s why they drafted me and that’s why I’m with the Cincinnati Reds.”
Since Votto has played only 24 games above the low-Class A level, he’ll start this year at either high-Class A Sarasota or Class AA Chattanooga. The Reds prefer not to rush any of their elite prospects, but Votto has had a tight learning curve so far. Still, he knows he has plenty of work to do if he wants to continue his ascent.
“I’m concentrating on defense and on getting stronger, being able to do a little bit more with the bat and being aggressive and taking advantage of the situation,” he said. “I feel like I’m doing the right things and I feel like I’m learning not to do the wrong things.”
As I said before, I hope Votto is in Chattanooga this season. It’s a little closer than Sarasota. He’s a very intriguing prospect, though. If it continues to look like Votto will hit, I hope the Reds don’t burden themselves by handing a Barry Larkin-like contract to Sean Casey when his current contract expires. We don’t need anyone standing in this young man’s way.
Blame Chad for creating this mess.
Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, “The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds” is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad’s musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine.
You can email Chad at firstname.lastname@example.org.