27. Cincinnati Reds (29–39, minus-28, LT: 21)
Joey Votto is one of the greatest hitters to ever walk the face of the Earth. With a massive .304/.415/.599 batting line, he ranks fifth in the National League in park-adjusted offense. By that same metric, since Opening Day 2015 he’s been the best hitter in the NL and the second-best hitter in the majors, trailing only Mike Trout. Even as a bit of a late bloomer, Votto’s still on his way to a Hall of Fame career, and he’s been one of the lone bright spots on a Reds team that’s probably going to finish below .500 for the fourth straight year—especially after reeling off nine losses in a row.
Incredibly, impossibly, Votto being a hybrid of Wade Boggs, Tony Gwynn, and Ted Williams might only be the second-most noteworthy thing about him. More than just a hitting savant, Votto’s also the most interesting man in baseball.
Gare Joyce’s recent feature on Votto for Sportsnet paints the picture of an introvert, a quiet and private man who’s “the sport’s most unknowable superstar.” All of that might be true. But it’s also true that Votto rivals Zack Greinke for the driest wit in baseball. Until recently, Votto’s turn on MLB Network’s Intentional Talk dressed as a Mountie was the gold standard for the Canadian’s kookiness. Or maybe it was his unrivaled ability to troll fans.
Now comes a new submission for the greatest Votto video. Jim Day of FOX Sports Ohio sat with the Reds superstar and learned the following:
—Votto still reps the youth team who played on growing up in Etobicoke, Ontario.
—Votto doesn’t “have the Internet.”
—Votto will buy Zack Cozart a donkey if Cozart earns the starting shortstop nod on the NL All-Star team.
—Fans can help name the donkey if Cozart makes it.