Cincinnati Reds first baseman Joey Votto has come under much scrutiny lately from members of the media and the fans alike for his failure to perform in as they put it ‘clutch’ situations. Votto silenced those critics Friday night with a massive walk off home run to deep center field to send the Reds home a winner on a muggy night at GABP.
Reds radio broadcaster Marty Brennaman has been the most vocal critic of Votto this season and every season Votto has been in the league. This past week in Boston as Votto approached the plate Brennaman made the comment “Here’s Votto, and he continues to exhibit a very quiet bat.” That remark and numerous others from Marty and his son Thom have irked Reds fans.
Surely Votto has hear the comments from the Brennaman’s, they are after all the voice of the Reds on the radio and television. It is perhaps the way they criticize in a condescending tone that annoys fans and possibly Votto. Saying that he isn’t ‘clutch’ is false.
Leader in RE24 since 2009? Yeah, that would be Joey Votto. How very unclutch of him.
— Beyond the Box Score (@BtBScore) May 10, 2014
RE24 is the difference in run expectancy (RE) between the start of the play and the end of the play. Joey Votto currently leads the majors in RE24 since 2009. As Beyond the Box Score Says, how very unclench of him. Even people outside of Cincinnati can see the criticism is unfound.
Votto is currently batting .262 this season, well below his career average of .312. Votto has historically had cold streaks in every season, this season it came earlier than expected and at a time when fans are already on edge. With a fan base looking for anything to complain about focusing on the star player is an easy target.
Friday night however in front of 27,000 people Votto turned everyones perceptions and ideas of him and this 2014 season around with a monster walk off home run. Sure it was only one game on one night in May but it is one night that everyone believes again.
Here are some fan reactions to Votto:
“Who cares? We just got the win.” – Joey Votto when asked stupid questions after a walk off.. Haha my dude.
— Ryan Linville (@Linville34) May 10, 2014
I suppose one idea is to just shut up and trust Joey Votto to determine when he swings and when he takes. #reds
— Joe Sheehan (@joe_sheehan) May 10, 2014
Joey Votto just told Thom to shut his mouth. And I love it. He destroyed that baseball.
— Doug Gray (@dougdirt24) May 10, 2014
Goddamn unclutch Joey Votto. Overpaid jerk.
— Clutchy McGritterson (@rpa44) May 10, 2014
Not everyone is as fed up with Votto as the Brennaman’s would like to think. Joey Votto is the face of the Cincinnati Reds for the next 10 years, he has a lot of baseball ahead of him. Learn to love him.