It’s probably not a healthy thing to keep stoking Jays fans’ maple-fuelled infatuation with a player still under contract to the Cincinnati Reds for two years, but there are a lot of reasons– something like two hundred million of them– to think that, when the time comes, Joey Votto is going to hit the open market. And for Jays fans yearning (ridiculously) for a Canadian superstar, a first baseman that isn’t Adam Lind, and a club building a national brand and shameless in their willingness to exploit players’ birth certificates, obviously that’s going to be the cause
Jon Morosi addresses this in his latest piece for Fox Sports, citing a source “with knowledge of Votto’s plans” who says that he and the reds “aren’t actively exchanging proposals now and that Votto is ‘in no rush’ to start.” He paints a picture of Votto as an extremely driven player, but more interestingly, for our purposes, someone who has done some thinking about how best to position oneself for stardom.
Sure, on one hand he says that he has “no problem falling under the radar,” but he also tells Morosi that “I think Albert might find — not that I know — that St. Louis might have been a good market as far as him being a star.” Morosi also points out that Votto “recently remarked to Hal McCoy of FOX Sports Ohio, ‘Prince Fielder sure got a lot of money, didn’t he?’ “
But he’s certainly not all about money, as demonstrated by a comment that should make us Jays fans take notice.
“The Blue Jays will be under intense pressure to pursue Votto if he hits the open market, since he was born and raised in Toronto,” Morosi writes. “But Votto seemed unmoved by the local-boy-makes-good-and-comes-home narrative when I mentioned it to him. ‘I want to play for a good team,’ said Votto, who now makes his offseason home in Florida. ‘Cincinnati has a good team right now.’ “
For now. With Votto. Two years from now, who knows?