MLB Playoffs: Postseason bubble is bad news for Reds veteran Joey Votto

If the Reds make the playoffs, Joey Votto is likely to struggle.

When the MLB Playoffs begin, Major League Baseball and the Player’s Association have agreed to operate in a “bubble”. This means, if the Cincinnati Reds make it to the postseason, they’ll be playing on the road. That’s bad news for Joey Votto.

Major League Baseball announced today that the 2020 Postseason will open on September 29th, with the World Series beginning on October 20th at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas. If the Reds, who are currently one game back in the race for the final Wild Card spot, qualify for the MLB Playoffs they’ll likely open on the road.

The four highest seeded teams, who are currently the Los Angeles Dodgers, Chicago Cubs, Atlanta Braves and San Diego Padres, would all host the Opening Round of the 2020 postseason. The Opening Round of the 2020 Postseason is the best-of-three and will be followed by the National League Division Series.

The NLDS will take place in Texas with two teams playing each other at Globe Life Field in Arlington and the other two teams going head-to-head at Minute Maid Park in Houston. The National League Championship Series will take place in Arlington as well.

So why is this bad news for Joey Votto? Well, it’s highly unlikely that the Reds will catch the Chicago Cubs who are currently 5.5 games ahead of Cincinnati. That means the Redlegs, if they get the chance to play October baseball, will have to do so on the road.

The road has been quite unkind to the Cincinnati Reds first baseman this season. Votto’s home and away spilts are something to behold. The six-time All-Star is slashing a meager .108/.213/.393 on the road this season and has just one home run while playing away from Great American Ball Park.

Conversely, the left-handed hitting Votto has been pulverizing the opposition at home. During 20 games on the banks of the Ohio River, Joey Votto is hitting .368/.482/.765 with eight home runs and 14 RBIs. He’s only struck out nine times while playing at GABP, compared to 22 punch outs on the road.

The Reds have yet to qualify for the MLB Playoffs, and in order to do so, they’ll need to win approximately seven of their final 11 games in order to qualify. A record of 30-30 might be enough to sneak into the playoffs.

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Joey Votto doesn’t have any sort of track record that would suggest he’d have success or failure in Arlington. Votto has had success, however, at Minute Maid Park in Houston. The former MVP owns a slash line of .400/.466/.658 over 39 games in the Houston Astros home ballpark. His 1.124 career-OPS in Houston is second only to Votto’s 1.417 OPS at Camden Yards in Baltimore.

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