The pros and cons of the Reds bringing Joey Votto back in 2024

There are reasons for and against bringing Joey Votto back to Cincinnati next season.
Cincinnati Reds first baseman Joey Votto
Cincinnati Reds first baseman Joey Votto / Adam Hunger/GettyImages
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Con: There aren't enough at-bats for Joey Votto next season

According to a recent report, Joey Votto does not want to be a part-time player. That's going to make his return next season very difficult. The Reds already have a very crowded infield.

Matt McLain, Christian Encarnacion-Strand, Spencer Steer, Jonathan India, Noelvi Marte, and Elly De La Cruz will all be jockeying for a spot on the infield dirt next season. The Reds may look to trade India during the offseason, and Steer could find himself playing left field more regularly in 2024.

But even if the Reds move on from India this winter and permanently shift Steer to the outfield grass, the infield already has the pieces in place. Encarnacion-Strand would occupy first base, Marte would lock down the hot corner, and the double-play tandem of De La Cruz and McLain would work up the middle.

But Votto could be the Reds designated hitter, right? Not so fast. With an outfield of Steer, TJ Friedl, Will Benson, and Jake Fraley, somebody is already occupying the DH spot every night. And again, this is without India as part of the roster; something that's not a forgone conclusion by any stretch of the imagination.

No matter which way you slice it, Joey Votto would be a part-time player if the Cincinnati Reds were to bring him back in 2024. Is that a role he's willing to take?