Joey Votto is hands down one of the top players in MLB. Disagreeing with that statement makes one sound uneducated, or makes one just simply a hater. His numbers, year in and year out, will put him in the MLB Hall of Fame. I’m here to tell you why.
You Simply Can’t Replace Him
Since his debut in late 2007, we all knew that Votto was going to be special, in just twenty four games, he hit .321/.360/.528. Since then, he’s been a top-five hitter and it’s no debate. He has legendary plate vision and discipline, drawing 996 base on balls in his career. Compare that to other guys who had prolific walk numbers. Votto is right behind Barry Bonds, who through 11 years, had a little more than 1,200. Babe Ruth had a little more than 1,100. His career WAR (Wins Above Replacement) is 54.8, no other Red has a WAR above 12.
Over his career, Votto has been a statistical monster. His career slash-line is .313/.435/.535. Only four other players in ML history have had a career .300/.400/.500 slash, and their names are Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Ty Cobb and Rogers Hornsby. This year, Votto was a monster at the plate. He hit .320/.454/.578, with 36 HR and 100 RBI. This wasn’t the sexy 59 HR season that Stanton put up, but there’s a huge difference that sets apart these two. Joey Votto rarely strikes out. In two years Votto has struck out 203 times. Just this year, Stanton struck out 163 times, and 303 times in the last two years. Votto is the all around better player than Stanton, but baseball’s love for the longball may put Joey at odds.
Now the interesting comparison is between Votto and the other MVP candidate, Paul Goldschmidt. Goldy hit .297/.404/.563, and is one of the best first basemen in the league, but he isn’t as good as Votto. Votto has a better batting average, a better OBP and a better SLG percentage. Plus, he played in every game this year, starting every single game. Votto means more to the Reds than Goldy means to the D-Backs, that’s why he should be taking home the hardware.
Only Way Is Up
Since coming into the league, Votto has only gotten better. It seems like every single year, he tops the previous. With the exception of 2012 and 2014, in which he missed most of the season due to injury, he has been flawless. He rarely strikes out, and he walks at prolific rates. It seems like he has improved every single year. As he enters his year 34 season, there is no reason to believe that he can’t improve anymore. He will improve on even the littlest things, whether it be seeing more pitches, or being the best fielder he can be. Joey Votto deserves the NL MVP just as much as the other two, the panel just has to see that.
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