CINCINNATI -- Reds first baseman Joey Votto is poised to take the next step toward his return from a knee injury.
Votto is slated to begin a two-game rehab assignment with Class A Dayton on Tuesday.
"I'm a little apprehensive, because I haven't played in such a long time," Votto said on Sunday. "Once I get going, I will feel fine."
Votto could rejoin the Reds for the Aug. 31-Sept. 2 three-game series at Houston.
"We're hoping he will be ready some time next weekend, if everything goes well," Reds manager Dusty Baker said.
Votto, 28, has been out of the Reds' lineup since July 16 and had surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee on July 17. A setback from a sliding drill required a second minor procedure to remove cartilage on Aug. 10.
Last weekend, Votto resumed baseball activities and he advanced to hitting while the team was in Philadelphia earlier this week. He did pregame work with the team throughout this weekend.
"Pretty good," Votto said when asked how it was going. "I will progress today. I've got a long way to go with my swing."
It was decided this time that Votto would not do any sliding drills before resuming playing. Otherwise, there is nothing else he has to do to get himself ready for Tuesday.
"Just continue to progress I think," Votto said. "I'm sure that anything I'm uncomfortable with will stand out while I'm playing my rehab games, which is the best part about the rehab games."