Report: Orioles sending slumping Nolan Reimold to Triple-A

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Nolan Reimold has struggled to come back from the Achilles’ tendon injury that cut his impressive rookie campaign short and required surgery in September, and now Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reports that the Orioles are sending him back to Triple-A.
As if a return to the minors wasn’t bad enough for a 26-year-old who hit .279/.365/.466 in 104 games last season, Reimold is losing his roster spot to Corey Patterson. Yes, that Corey Patterson. Apparently his hitting .368 in 14 games at Triple-A convinced the Orioles to overlook a decade of awfulness, or maybe they just want a speedy center fielder off the bench and don’t care about his bat.
Either way, Reimold is hitting just .205 with 20 strikeouts in 96 plate appearances and has looked very rough defensively when the Orioles haven’t limited him to designated hitter duties, so it’s tough to blame them for thinking he’s better off trying to get back on track in Norfolk rather than Baltimore. And if Reimold can’t clobber Triple-A pitching, then the Orioles will know something is really wrong. He hit .394 with a 1.228 OPS in 31 games at Triple-A before being called up last season.

Joey Votto: “I tried to get fatter. I succeeded at that apparently.”

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We’ve poked fun often at the spring training trope of players showing up to camp in the “best shape of [their] life.” Reds first baseman Joey Votto has turned that entirely on its head. Talking about his offseason, the 2010 NL MVP said, “I tried to get fatter. I succeeded at that apparently. We did all the testing and I am fatter,” Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. Votto, of course, wasn’t trying to say he’s not in shape; he was just using some of his trademark self-deprecating humor.

Votto did get serious when discussing the state of the rebuilding Reds. As Buchanan also reported, Votto said, “I think we’re starting to get to the point where people are starting to get tired of this stretch of ball. I think something needs to start changing and start going in a different direction. I’m going to do my part to help make that change.”

Votto, 34, is under contract with the Reds through at least 2023, so he still has plenty of incentive to help see the rebuild through. He has been nothing short of stellar over the last three seasons. This past season, he hit .320/.454/.578 with 36 home runs, 100 RBI, and 106 runs scored in 707 appearances across all 162 games. Votto led the majors in walks (134) and on-base percentage and led the National League in OPS (1.032).

Despite Votto’s presence, both FanGraphs and PECOTA are projecting the Reds to put up a 74-88 record. The club had a pretty quiet offseason, expecting to enter 2018 with largely the same roster as last year.