Ever since July 15th when Joey Votto and the Cincinnati Reds announced that he would be having knee surgery, the MLB Rumors have been swirling about the return of the 2010 NL MVP. It was expected that he would miss 3 to 4 weeks because of the surgery; however, he was doing quite well a couple of weeks after the procedure and was progressing nicely. He was seen taking infield, running bases and even sliding. It was the sliding, apparently, that caused him to go back under the knife. Consequently, his return has been delayed further.
Now MLB Rumors has Joey Votto staying out of the Reds’ lineup at least until the end of August. As of today, he has missed five weeks of action. When he went down, Votto was having another MVP season with a batting average of .342, on-base-percentage of .465, a whopping 36 doubles, and so on. There were times that he seemed to carry the Reds by himself.
Doom was the mood in Reds Country when news of his surgery went public. Fortunately, the Reds, as a team, have really pulled together. If anything, they are playing better ball than before Votto went on the DL. Others have stepped up – notably, Todd Frazier, Brandon Phillips and Ryan Ludwick – and the Reds have gone from being a game ahead of the Pittsburgh Pirates in July to 7 games ahead of the St. Louis Cardinals (who recently passed the faltering Pirates to take second place in the division). The Reds are sporting a 26-12 record during Votto’s absence, but I do not believe that they will be able to maintain such a pace without their leader playing everday.
I want to really hope that the MLB Rumors are correct and that Votto will be available and totally healthy by September. He’s said he will not return until he can go 100%. One thing is certain the Reds will need him for the stretch run.
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