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#pounditFriday, January 27, 2023

Joey Votto speaks negatively about Canadian baseball

Joey Votto

Joey Votto is apparently a Canadian in name only these days.

In an appearance Tuesday on the Yahoo! Sports MLB Podcast, the Cincinnati Reds first baseman, who is a native of Toronto, was asked if he was happy about fellow Canadian James Paxton throwing a no-hitter for the Seattle Mariners in Toronto earlier this month.

“People aren’t going to love that I say this [but] I don’t care almost at all about Canadian baseball,” said Votto, per Dave Pollard of the Ottawa Citizen. “When I say that … I wasn’t raised inside Canadian baseball really. I played on a local team but as an 18-year-old I was drafted … I’m coming up on half of my life being in the United States working and being supported by American baseball.

“I’m more happy for [Paxton] as a fellow player,” added the former NL MVP. “I’m more happy for him because I like to see people achieve their dreams. As far as Toronto, and Canadian baseball, and the country of Canada, and [Paxton] being Canadian, I don’t care at all. [Paxton], or the Jays, or Canada, in general, may disagree with that, but I really couldn’t give a rat’s a– about that. I’m more happy for him. I thought that was a great moment. [But] I’m not connected to Toronto so I don’t feel any sort of way about that.”

For the 34-year-old Votto, who is hitting a solid .291 with six home runs and 23 RBIs so far this season, it’s an interesting 180 after he represented Canada at the World Baseball Classic in 2009 and again in 2013 (though not in 2017). Votto has also gone out of his way to show love to his native land in the past, which makes these latest comments from him all the more surprising.


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