Sportress of Blogitude

Joey Votto jokingly blames exiting Monday’s game on earthquake

Joey Votto left the Cincinnati Reds’ 10-7 loss to the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park on Monday night with lower back tightness during the fourth inning. But Votto’s day at the ballpark, along with everyone else present, got off to a bizarre start when a magnitude 3.5 earthquake centered near Oakland shook things up a bit at approximately 7:18 PT.

The seismic activity occurred right ahead of Votto’s at-bat in the first inning.

After the game, Votto jokingly blamed his early exit on the earthquake.

“I was feeling pretty good and then that earthquake hit and all of a sudden everything got thrown off right around 7:18 p.m. in the middle of my first at-bat,” Votto joked when asked about the status of his ailing back, via MLB.com. “Oh, I got taken out of the game because of it, are you kidding me? I’m a sensitive soul.”

All kidding aside, Votto is not expected to be in the Reds’ lineup for Tuesday tilt with the Giants.

“He’ll be working with the trainer tonight,” Reds interim manager Jim Riggleman said. “When he comes in tomorrow, we’ll re-evaluate it. We might end up giving him the day tomorrow.”

After a horrible start that plagued the entire Reds team, something that led to the early-season ouster of former skipper Bryan Pryce last month, Votto has come alive. In his last 11 games, Votto is batting .375, raising his overall slash to .291/.414/.446 with six homers and 23 RBI in 41 games.

Votto’s surge at the plate has coincided with the Reds playing a little better ball than early on. While still in last place in NL Central with a 14-28 record, Cincinnati has won six of their last 10 games, a moderate improvement, to say the least.

With that in mind, the hope by the Reds is that Votto’s lower back issues don’t keep him on the bench for very long.