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Pitching around Votto just fine for Reds, Phillips

Pitching around Votto just fine for Reds, Phillips

CINCINNATI -- Reds first baseman and No. 3 hitter Joey Votto has yet to really take off at the plate but entered Tuesday batting .317 in 13 games. His Major League leading 21 walks were 10 more than second-place's Albert Pujols -- and three more than the entire White Sox team.

Opposing pitchers have worked Votto carefully and he has never been afraid to take walks. Reds manager Dusty Baker doesn't expect pitchers to change their approach with Votto, which would make cleanup hitter Brandon Phillips the biggest beneficiary.

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"If they don't, Brandon could have a whole bunch of RBIs," Baker said on Tuesday. "I don't care who does it, as long as somebody does it. Brandon seems pretty happy with it."

Phillips entered the night fourth in the Majors with 16 RBIs and has eight multi-hit games during a great start to his season.

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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