Cincinnati Reds: Joey Votto on MVP-Type Pace in 2013

By Tim Letcher

Joey Votto has been there before, and he may be heading there again. In 2010, the Cincinnati Reds first baseman was the National League Most Valuable Player, hitting .324 with 37 home runs and 113 runs batted in. Votto also led the league with a .424 on-base percentage.

Votto is currently on a MVP-type of pace in 2013, and he added to his already-stellar numbers in Friday’s 7-4 Reds’ victory over the Chicago Cubs. Votto went 2-for-4 in Friday’s contest, including his eighth homer of the season. He raised his batting average to a league-leading .355 and his on-base percentage to .478, which leads all hitters in both leagues.

With two hits on Friday, Votto extended his current hitting streak to 12 games, during which he is batting a smoldering .511. Not coincidentally, the Reds are 10-2 during Votto’s streak, and the Reds have cut into the division lead of the St. Louis Cardinals.

Votto is not alone when it comes to the Reds’ offense. Brandon Phillips extended a hitting streak of his own on Friday. Phillips now has an 11-game streak, and he continues to lead the National League in runs batted in, collecting his 41st and 42nd RBIs on Friday.

Jay Bruce has also been hot for Cincinnati, hitting in 12 of his last 14 games, and posting a .346 average during those 14 contests. Bruce has always been a streaky hitter, but when he gets hot, he can hit with the best players in the National League.

But, it’s Votto that the Reds count on nearly every night. Dusty Baker knows he can put Votto in the three-hole, and that he’s going to get production from that spot. When a team has a player that reaches base nearly half of the time he comes to the plate, that team will likely be able to score with anyone.

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