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Reds are being “vague” about Joey Votto’s rehab status

May 30, 2014, 1:40 PM EDT

Joey Votto Getty Getty Images

Joey Votto is eligible to come off the disabled list Saturday, but the former MVP isn’t ready to return from a strained left quadriceps and there’s no official timetable yet for him to rejoin the Reds.

In fact, according to John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer “the Reds have been vague–perhaps deliberately so–on a timetable with Votto” and manager Bryan Price said that “the protocols moving ahead are undecided.”

There was initially fear that Votto had suffered a significant knee injury, so the quadriceps strain definitely qualified as good news, but assuming that he’ll need at least a brief minor-league rehab assignment before coming off the disabled list it seems likely that Votto is at least a couple more weeks away.

Price has decided on backup catcher Brayan Pena as the primary first baseman in Votto’s absence, which is interesting considering Pena is a career .261 hitter with minimal power, poor on-base skills, and a lifetime .662 OPS. So naturally he’s hit .367 in 10 starts at first base so far.

  1. metalhead65 - May 30, 2014 at 2:03 PM

    let him take as much time as needed before he comes back. this season is over for the reds anyway so why take a chance on ruining the future of the franchise? while he may not be a young kid anymore when you are paying a guy 200 million he is the future of the franchise.

  2. captainwisdom8888 - May 30, 2014 at 2:32 PM

    I’ve always seen Joey Votto as a very safe bet from a fantasy standpoint, not someone who is going to set the world on fire and lead the league in bombs, but someone who you know you can count on to bat .300 and pile up a good amount of RBIs with around 30 HRs. I felt safe going with him again this year but I, along with everyone else who burned a 2-3 round pick on him, am really beginning to regret it big time. I hope he returns in another couple weeks but I don’t anticipate he will be his usual self.

  3. lpd1964 - May 30, 2014 at 2:46 PM

    This is why you avoid contracts like the one given to Votto, the reds have so much salary tied up in Votto, Bruce and Phillips that they can’t really address the other glaring holes on this team. No left fielder, no shortstop and the minor league system other than Stephenson is barren. Not much to look forward to.

  4. thehakko936 - May 30, 2014 at 2:51 PM

    Votto hasn’t been right since the first knee problems. The Reds jumped the gun with the big contract based on the MVP season. They paid a one shot MVP like he would be a lifetime MVP. I think Votto will always be solid, but he will never be close to meeting the expectation of that contract. That contract is paying him like a perennial MVP candidate, which he is not and wasn’t going to be.

    At least the Griffey Jr. contract was for a guy who was a perennial MVP type player. The fact that he just couldn’t stay healthy spoiled his time in Cincy.

    • metalhead65 - May 30, 2014 at 3:09 PM

      that and the fact the cheapskate owner they had at the time refused to spend a nickel more on any other players that could him bring a winner to Cincinnati. I bet if you asked him now he would say he never would have come home if he knew that was going to be the case.

    • dan1111 - May 30, 2014 at 5:44 PM

      If you give ability to get on base its proper due, Votto has been playing like an MVP candidate every year. His performance so far has been worth the contract, the question is just whether he can keep that up for the next bajillion years.

  5. whiteknightblackheart - May 30, 2014 at 3:51 PM

    I have this guy and Bryce Harper. Thank goodness for (peds) Cruz!

  6. contraryguy - May 30, 2014 at 5:11 PM

    The Reds medical staff, inspiring confidence since the Ryan Madson signing. They’re probably circling Votto like chimps around the obelisk in 2001, wondering what happens next.

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