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Meanwhile, in Brandon Phillips vs. Joey Votto land …

Aug 22, 2013, 4:34 PM EDT

joey votto getty Getty Images

From today’s Reds-Dbacks game, a sequence that will never get recounted by the folks like Paul Daugherty who like to say Joey Votto is a bum and Brandon Phillips is the team MVP.

Third inning: Shin-Soo Choo leads off with a single. The second batter — today Todd Frazier — strikes out looking.  Choo reaches second on a wild pitch. Joey Votto comes up and isn’t given a thing to hit, walking on four straight pitches. Another wild pitch sends Choo to third, Votto to second.  Then Brandon Phillips grounds out to score a run.

The two-hole hitter does nothing.  Votto, clearly a hitter the pitcher wants no part of, is given nothing to hit because he’d rather face Phillips.  Chance, circumstance and wildness put the runners in scoring position and what would be considered a failed at bat in most other situations gives Phillips is oh-so-valuable RBI.

But sure, if we want to go with the notion that Votto is somehow less of a player because of it, feel free.

  1. braddavery - Aug 22, 2013 at 4:38 PM

    Well they could bat Votto in the 4-spot and he would have more RBI, but the team is scorching right now and winning the way things are. It is pretty lame to act like Phillips is more valuable simply based on RBI when he’s in the RBI spot of the lineup. He’s having a great season, no doubt, but he’s no Votto.

    • hammyofdoom - Aug 22, 2013 at 4:47 PM

      But the problem is he ISN’T having a great year… he’s having the weakest hitting year since he’s actually been in Cincinnati. He just has a lot of RBI

      • braddavery - Aug 22, 2013 at 4:51 PM

        The funniest part is, Votto is leading the entire National League in runs created. THE. ENTIRE. NATIONAL. LEAGUE.

      • braddavery - Aug 22, 2013 at 4:53 PM

        Plus Votto’s FanGraphs WAR is 5.2 to Phillips’ 2.2. He’s clearly having a more productive season to anyone who understands how statistics work in baseball.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 22, 2013 at 4:53 PM

        Is there a reason Votto doesn’t bat behind Choo? Best two guys in MLB via BB%.

      • ezthinking - Aug 22, 2013 at 5:02 PM

        If it’s Choo – Votto then Votto has even fewer opportunities to drive in runs, especially in the NL.

        Why this is all a war makes no sense. Votto is getting on base, Phillips is driving in runs, team is winning. No need to argue.

      • thomas844 - Aug 22, 2013 at 5:17 PM

        He is hitting .362 with RISP (team average: .253) and .647 (team average: .310) with the bases loaded. He may not be an MVP but you can’t tell me that’s not a great year.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 22, 2013 at 5:49 PM

        If it’s Choo – Votto then Votto has even fewer opportunities to drive in runs, especially in the NL.

        If Cozart is batting second, then 3/4 times Votto comes up with a man out already. So moving him up to the 2 hole means you have two guys almost getting on base 50% of the time each. This has a downstream effect on having more runners on with less outs for the guys behind him.

      • mrredlegz - Aug 23, 2013 at 6:51 AM

        @church; They are both lefties. This is Dusty Baker we’re talking about here.

  2. El Bravo - Aug 22, 2013 at 4:43 PM

    It’s crazy that anyone would raise such an argument in real reaity that is really real.

  3. stoutfiles - Aug 22, 2013 at 4:48 PM

    Votto only gets Choo to hit in…the two hole hitter has been miserable all year. Cozart has hit there most of the year, even though his OBP is .271 and his career OBP is .281. It’s only recently that Frazier has been hitting there, even though he’s a minor upgrade on Cozart…and the offense has drastically improved because of it.

  4. thomas844 - Aug 22, 2013 at 5:09 PM

    I don’t see why people want to keep comparing these two, it’s like apples and oranges. Votto is an on-base machine who works the count well and makes the pitchers work. Phillips is an elite defender who doesn’t get on base often but still drives in a lot of runs. And people can try to diminish what Phillips has done this year by pointing out his mediocre AVG, OBP, WAR, having more opportunities than most players, etc., but no matter how you twist it, 94 RBI is still 94 RBI and that is darned impressive.

    No matter who the MVP of the Reds is (who, honestly, I believe is Latos right now), all I know is that Votto and Phillips, in different ways, are two of the most key offensive players on the Reds.

    • sportsfan18 - Aug 22, 2013 at 11:38 PM

      Good points… I’m not disagreeing, just going to add a few things is all.

      Yes, Votto is an on base machine, he’s leading the league this yr again as he’s led the NL for each of the past 3 seasons…

      He’s also 3rd in the NL right now in OPS and he’s 11th right now in slugging.

      4 seasons ago he led the NL in slugging and he’s been among the league leaders in this too yr after yr.

      His current slugging percentage, while placing him 11th in the NL right now is the lowest of his career (if he ends up around where he is at now at yrs end I mean). He’s done much better slugging in previous seasons and even with his “struggles” in slugging this yr, he’s still 11th in the league…

      He’s far more than only an on base machine…

      The difference between Laos and Leake right now is amazingly close. Laos is 12 and 4. Leake is 11 and 5. Laos ERA is 3.02 and Leake is 3.12. They’ve pitched within 3 innings of each other so far. Laos has given up 54 earned runs, Leake has given up 55 earned runs. Laos WHIP is 1.24, Leake’s is 1.23.

      The stretch run will be good and I’m rooting for the Reds…

  5. Marty McKee - Aug 22, 2013 at 5:15 PM

    Thom Brennaman, who is an idiot (I doubt anyone will argue otherwise, certainly no Reds fan), implied strongly today that Goldschmidt was a better player than Votto because Goldschmidt “swings the bat.”

    Votto has more base hits than Goldschmidt this season. And Goldschmidt is third in the NL in walks. Votto and Choo are 1 and 2.

    • largebill - Aug 23, 2013 at 11:42 PM

      That is a case of “like father – like son” idiot act. Marty Brennaman used to always complain about Adam Dunn walking. When that moron is announcing I feel like screaming at the radio – only idiots swing at bad pitches.

  6. bennoj - Aug 22, 2013 at 5:21 PM

    Old school print columnists are the band playing The Pitcher Win-RBI Shuffle as the Titanic that was the newspaper industry slips beneath the waves…

  7. scatterbrian - Aug 22, 2013 at 6:32 PM

    Two 2Bs

    Player A: .266/.326/.377, .309 wOBA, 96 wRC+ and 25 RBIs in 332 PA
    Player B: .264/.312/.405, .310 wOBA, 92 wRC+ and 93 RBIs in 523 PA

    • scatterbrian - Aug 22, 2013 at 7:18 PM

      A is Eric Sogard
      B is obviously Phillips

      • APBA Guy - Aug 23, 2013 at 12:29 AM

        Slick, Brian, nicely done.

  8. dutchman45 - Aug 22, 2013 at 9:05 PM

    Thom Brenaman is one of the most respected announcers in baseball as well as football. marty calling him a idiot is ridiculous. No doubt that the Arizona first baseman swings the bat. Votto is a on base machine. If Goldschmidt continues over the years to hit close to 300, has 30 plus homers and 100 Robby’s, he does swing the bat. Any team would love to have either of them. I am proud of Votto and his approach to the game. However do not call Thom a idiot because you disagree with his opinion. Lots of baseball people would agree with his statement.

    • Marty McKee - Aug 23, 2013 at 8:29 AM

      Just to be clear. I don’t think Thom is an idiot because I disagree with his opinion. I think he’s an idiot because he doesn’t know very much about baseball and he believes and says a lot of very stupid things about baseball.

    • stlouis1baseball - Aug 23, 2013 at 11:03 AM

      No…Thom Brenaman is very much an idiot. Always has been…always will be.
      I live right in the middle of Cubs/Redlegs Country (about 1 1/2 hours west of the Queen City). All my buddies (Redlegs fans)…will agree that he is an idiot.
      Although it does pang them to do so.
      The only thing they take exception with is when I throw his cantankerous, loud mouth Father in the mix. But at least Marty is at an age in which he has an excuse.

      • largebill - Aug 23, 2013 at 11:45 PM

        Marty Brennaman’s age is no excuse. He’s been an awful announcer and a moron for decades.

  9. tmdill18 - Aug 22, 2013 at 9:38 PM

    Another vote here for Brennaman being an idiot. Can’t stand his baseball or football calls.

  10. dutchman45 - Aug 22, 2013 at 10:17 PM

    Another opinion in the minority regarding THOM. He is smooth and entertaining. Plus a great REDS Fan when not on a national reds broadcast.

  11. drewy44 - Aug 23, 2013 at 10:52 AM

    Reds broadcasting in general, especially on Fox Sports Ohio, is absolutely excruciating to listen to. I realize not everyone can be Vin Scully, but damn, it would be nice if the broadcasters could at least get players names right, or call the game correctly. They are too busy being homers that would make Hawk Harrelson be ashamed of them.

    In Thom Brennaman’s defense, when the Reds were absolutely awful, he had no problem calling them out on the rug. But overall, they are all terrible.

    • stlouis1baseball - Aug 23, 2013 at 11:04 AM

      “In Thom Brennaman’s defense, when the Reds were absolutely awful, he had no problem calling them out on the rug. But overall, they are all terrible.”

      On point Drew. I will add his cantankerous, loud mouthed Father also has no problem calling them out (when warranted). That is the ONE THING I appreciate about Thom and Marty.

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