Forgive the delayed podcast listening, but in last week’s Jonah Keri Grantland pod he had ESPN Baseball Tonight anchor Steve Berthiaume on to take a tour around the league after one week.
When the boys were talking about the Cincinnati Reds, Berthiaume dropped an interesting tidbit on Joey Votto’s recently signed 10 year 225 million dollar deal:
“I think, think they (the Reds) were a lot closer to getting Albert Pujols than anybody knows or anybody talked about. I think the Votto money was targeted for Pujols in the off-season and when that didn’t pan out that they said, OK, let’s keep our guy, let’s give it to Joey Votto. I think those two were more connected than anyone realizes.”
Jonah, audibly a bit taken aback by this statement, defers to Berthiaume and tells him that he’s got the inside scoop and doesn’t press the statement. But as far as I can tell, this is the first time that anyone of this caliber of host or reporter has linked the Reds to being “close” with Pujols.
What happened happened, but unlike a heel turn with the Cubs that would have caused much angst, but little in the way of actual competition for the NL Central… a battle with the Reds that’s already at a slow boil? With Pujols AND Votto 19 times in 2012? That would have been tremendous theater.
You can listen to the whole pod: LINK HERE (24:30 mark approx. for exact quote)
As we get further away from this whole thing more interesting tid bits like this should be coming out. We’ll do our best to keep you posted and remind you how much Pujols truly detests your ass.