ST. LOUIS -- No Reds All-Stars were selected Tuesday by National League captain Prince Fielder to participate in next week's Home Run Derby at Chase Field. Fielder picked Brewers teammate Rickie Weeks, the Dodgers' Matt Kemp and the Cardinals' Matt Holliday.
Reds first baseman Joey Votto didn't expect an invitation, but was willing to participate before Fielder's decision was revealed.
"Last year, I was a little run down and the All-Star Game came too quickly on me. This year I have more time, and it would be a good experience," Votto said. "Another reason I'd do it is that place is air conditioned in Arizona. In the middle of summer and you do it outdoors, like in St. Louis, it takes two or three days to recover at least."
Votto wasn't concerned that he wouldn't be getting the full four days off during the All-Star break like most of his teammates. After last year's All-Star Game, he was 1-for-16 over the first four games of the second half. Taken into consideration was that Votto did a media blitz as part of the All-Star Final Vote campaign, which he won. He had to make speedy arrangements for his family to be at the game, and flew cross-country from Philadelphia to Anaheim for the All-Star festivities.
Of course, Votto eventually found his groove again and went on to overwhelmingly win the 2010 National League Most Valuable Player Award.
"You don't get consecutive days of rest during the season, so it will feel normal," Votto said. "My preference, I don't think I'd be comfortable taking four days off with my swing and with ground balls, too. You can get stiff or a little out of sync. I actually enjoy the All-Star Game for that particular reason."