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Sturdy knee has Votto back in lineup after marathon

Sturdy knee has Votto back in lineup after marathon

Sturdy knee has Votto back in lineup after marathon
CINCINNATI -- Joey Votto's left knee doesn't seem to be bothering him too much. The All-Star first baseman made a speedy recovery and has yet to leave the Reds' lineup since making his return Sept. 5.

Even after playing all 5 hours, 22 minutes and 14 innings of Monday night's 4-3 win over the Pirates, Votto was ready to go Tuesday.

"Joey came in smiling today and said he feels great," said Reds manager Dusty Baker, who was surprised by Votto's strength just a month after his most recent surgery. "It's a great step, because I didn't think it would be that way. It just shows what kind of shape he's in."

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Votto is even surprising himself with his rapid return.

"I didn't know what to expect," Votto said. "I usually try to play things by ear. I've felt pretty good so far. I've had my moments, but in general, pretty good."

In the five games he's been back in the lineup, Votto is hitting .333 with a double and two runs, drawing seven walks for a .565 on-base percentage.

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