The cool thing about Joey Votto is that he never stops being Joey Votto, and that’s what makes him one of the most peculiar and entertaining stars in baseball. He’s the slugging first baseman who chokes up on his bat and seems to love a walk more than a hit; he’s the guy who can force a team into playing a four-man outfield and then whack a double anyway; he’s the guy who hates to step out of the box between pitches; he’s the soft-spoken Canadian who can’t help but repeatedly own fans and hecklers; he’s the guy who did this thing for awhile.
This week at Wrigley field, Votto has gone Full Joey Votto. On Monday night, he got three hits—including the aforementioned double he whipped right through a four-man outfield—in five at-bats and decided that instead of giving away a foul ball as a souvenir, he’d see if he could throw it out of the damn stadium:
Last night, he went 0-for-2 with three walks and a run scored, extending his streak of games in which he’s reached base at least twice to 20. Nobody has done that since Barry Bonds in 2004, and if reaches base twice in each of the next two games he will break a record set by Ted Williams in 1948. He also demonstrated once again that he as no patience for this souvenir business:
Votto currently leads the league in walks, on-base percentage, and OPS. Since the All-Star break, his on-base percentage is an unbelievable .507. He’s got 31 homers and 23 doubles to boot, and he’s played in all 120 of the Reds’ games this season. He’s cool as hell.