In 13 major league seasons, Joey Votto has caught his fair share of pop ups as the Cincinnati Reds first baseman. Amazingly though, through the first 6,828 plate appearances of his MLB career, he had never once hit a pop up that was caught by his counterpart.
That all changed Wednesday afternoon during the Reds 3-2 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Pedro Báez got Votto to pop up to first baseman Cody Bellinger in foul territory. When Bellinger squeezed the ball for the final out in the eighth inning, one of MLB’s longest and most remarkable streaks was officially over.
It took Votto 1,592 games, 6,829 plate appearances and 27,918 pitches to be retired on what is a common play in MLB.
We’re not talking about an unassisted triple play here, or even an inside-the-park home run. Those are extremely rare, or at least somewhat rare.
When it actually happened, it seemed like nobody knew how to react.
joey votto popped out to first the world is actually ending— Joseph Robin (@thewall85) April 17, 2019
This has to be a sign for the zombie apocalypse— mason tcb (@Brian_Barot) April 17, 2019
The amazing thing about Votto is that he never hits pop ups, at all.
Dating back to his MVP season in 2010, he’s only hit eight infield pop ups.
Joey Votto, who had 7 total infield fly balls from 2010-18, popped out to first base in foul territory to end the 8th— Eric Stephen (@ericstephen) April 17, 2019
That speaks to Votto’s amazing bat control and plate discipline.
Sometimes Votto has been criticized for being too patient and too picky at the plate. But when you're a career .310/.426/.528 hitter who does a good job of avoiding empty at-bats and unproductive outs, you're clearly doing something right.
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