Shin-Soo Choo and I shared 300 hits 10 years ago, and Votto has no intention of retiring for at least one more year.
Joey Votto, 40, the “RBI machine” who formed a 300-RBI duo with Shin-Soo Choo (41-SSG Rangers) for the Cincinnati Reds a decade ago, has announced his intention to extend his contract. Despite his age, he wants to play for another year.
Appearing on the US sports talk show ‘The Dan Patrick Show’ on July 7 (KST), Votto said, “I’m not retired yet. I want to play in the major leagues for at least one more year.”
Votto, who signed a 10-year, $225 million extension with Cincinnati in April 2012, was guaranteed through this year. His $20 million salary next year is a club option, which is unlikely to be exercised by Cincinnati. The Reds will likely pay Votto a $7 million buyout to end the deal. Cincinnati fans gave Votto a standing ovation at the final home game of the season on Sept. 25.
Votto, who was selected by Cincinnati with the 44th overall pick in the second round of the 2002 draft, made his major league debut in 2007 and spent 17 years with the Reds until this year. The franchise star can’t imagine playing anywhere else but Cincinnati.
“I’m going to be a free agent for the first time in my professional career. I can’t tell you how excited I am,” Votto said, adding, “I’d love to stay in Cincinnati, but if they don’t want me, I’m open to playing for another team.”
Votto’s iconic status makes it difficult for Cincinnati to let him go. He could sign a new one-year deal at a reduced salary. However, with younger first base and designated hitter options in Spencer Steer and Christian Encarnacion-Stant, Votto would have to serve as a backup if he stays in Cincinnati.
Votto has seen a noticeable decline in production over the last two years. After posting the worst numbers of his career in 2021, batting just 2-for-5 (66-for-322) with 11 homers, 42 RBIs and a .689 OPS in 91 games, Votto was lost for the season in August after undergoing reconstructive surgery on his left shoulder rotator cuff and biceps. He rehabbed and returned to the big leagues in mid-June, but was just 2-for-42 (208-for-42) with 14 homers, 38 RBIs and a .747 OPS in 65 games.
Votto said, “The last couple years have been terrible. I haven’t been healthy for two years, so I want to play well. I don’t want to end like this,” Votto said, 먹튀검증토토사이트 adding that he wants to finish his final season healthy.
Votto, a right-handed hitting first baseman from Toronto, Canada, has played in 2056 games in 17 seasons in the majors, batting .409 with 2,035 doubles, 356 home runs, 1144 RBIs, 1365 walks, a .511 slugging percentage and a .920 OPS. He finished in the top seven of MVP voting six times, including winning the National League (NL) MVP in 2010, and was a six-time All-Star. A powerhouse leadoff hitter, he led the NL in OPS seven times from 2010-2013 and 2016-2018.
In 2013, he and Shin-Soo Choo became the first Cincinnati players to reach the 300-RBI milestone, as Votto hit 316 and Shin-Soo Choo hit 300 that year. The friendship continued even after Shin-Soo Choo became a free agent with the Texas Rangers the following year. During Players’ Weekend in 2017, when players wore nicknames on their jerseys instead of their names, Shin-Soo Choo wore “TOKKI1” and Votto wore “TOKKI2” to showcase their close friendship.
The nickname came after Votto called Shin-soo Choo a rabbit when they played together in 2013, saying, “No matter how fast you run, I can’t catch you, like a rabbit that can’t catch up.” Though he is no longer in the major leagues, Shin-Soo Choo, who is a year older, is still playing in South Korea this year in his 41st season. It will be interesting to see if Votto is given the opportunity to play a 41-year-old season next year.