Joey Votto Finally Met His (Comedic) Match

Bryan Brandom
(Photo: Getty Images)

Joey Votto is usually the one who makes light of the spirit of competition.

But on Thursday, that designation instead belonged to the Brewers‘ Eric Kratz, who spent part of the third inning of a matchup with the Reds exchanging breath checks with Votto.

As you might expect from a man who’s on pace to lead the league in walks for a sixth time, Votto can get contentious about the strike zone.

Such a disposition resulted in a spat with home plate umpire Roberto Ortiz on Thursday, before Kratz, a man of considerable proportions, stepped in.

The tiff was dumb.

But at least the players involved knew it.

“There was just a little bit of a misunderstanding at the plate and other than both of us standing our ground, there was really nothing to it,” said Votto, uncharacteristically passing up on a moment ripe for humor.

That’s OK, though.

Because Kratz, a journeyman if there ever was one, filled the void left by the Reds’ Canadian first baseman.

“Completely blown out of proportion, that’s all,” said Kratz, a 38-year-old with 241 MLB games to his name. “We were discussing the Canadian dollar and flawed systems in our two governments. He was coming from a different side of it and we were just discussing those kinds of things.”

Actually, considering Votto is involved, we probably can’t rule out that this is the truth.