Watch Joey Votto explain his message for young Reds players

Joey Votto seems intent on dominating the 2018 baseball season on and off the field.

After he nearly won the National League MVP on a last-place team a season ago, the former is to be expected.

Roughly two weeks into spring training, the latter seems to be true based on how candid he has been in interviews. (See above.)

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On Sunday afternoon he had some fun with Reds reporter Jim Day before getting serious about the state of the team.

We’ll let Day work out whether or not he is going to, well, work out on camera anytime soon, but how about Votto talking about something he learned from the last Reds rebuild he wants to take into this one?

The reference to a leadership void in 2010 is pretty interesting. Not that he is throwing anyone under the bus but that it sounds like he wants to avoid similar mistakes this time around by telling the current youngsters not to be timid.

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“I think the younger players need to know it’s their team,” Votto said. “The only chance we’ll have in the near future and the long term is if they take this game and make it theirs.

“I found when I was a younger player that I was a little bit hesitant. I took the backseat at times. And I think the younger players on this squad need to know the time for that is over. It’s now time to step to the forefront and take over this team.

“I look forward to it. We’ve got tons of talent. I think it’s going to happen in the near future, but I worry about the Reds fans. Like I said, I’m a Reds fan myself, and I really want to see good things happen as soon as possible.”

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