Reckless driving charges dropped against Yasiel Puig

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This says more about the legal standard for reckless driving in Florida than it says about the safety of Yasiel Puig’s driving, but be it known that the reckless driving charges against him have been dropped. From WVZN-TV in Florida:

The State Attorney’s Office will not pursue areckless driving charge against Dodger’s outfielder Yasiel Puig, after the MLB star was clocked doing 110 mph across Alligator Alley in late December.

Prosecutors say the speed, while excessive, by itself is not enough to support a charge of reckless driving.

Apparently there need to be aggravating factors beyond just speed to support a reckless driving charge in Florida, and there was no evidence that he was weaving or taking risks beyond going 110 m.p.h. Kind of surprising — a lot of states deem certain speeds to be reckless no matter how straight and steady you’re keeping it on the road — but Florida isn’t like everyplace else.

Here’s hoping, however, that Puig nonethless sticks to his plan to have someone else do his driving for him. Or, short of that, slows the hell down.

(h/t Big League Stew)

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

Andy Lyons/Getty Images
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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.