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Video: Joey Votto gives fans in first row a souvenir and a high-five

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Reds first baseman Joey Votto hasn’t had the best year from a P.R. perspective. He’s gotten angry at fans for interfering with a foul ball catch attempt, trolled Phillies fans, and stomped on a paper airplane. It seemed more to be Votto’s quirky sense of humor rather than actual malice, but it hasn’t really earned him any new fans.

Perhaps having learned his lesson, Votto was nothing but nice after catching a Wilmer Flores pop-up in foul territory down the first base line in the top of the first inning of Tuesday’s game against the Mets. After catching the ball to end the inning, Votto promptly lobbed it to a fan who had lobbied for the souvenir. He then went to an adjacent fan and gave him a high-five, flashing his winning smile on his way back to the dugout.

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As for actual baseball stuff, Votto came into the evening hitting an outstanding .312/.435/.524 with 22 home runs, 79 RBI, 85 runs scored, and a league-leading total of 99 walks in 563 plate appearances.

Donaldson ejected for kicking dirt on plate after home run

David Banks-USA TODAY Sports
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Minnesota’s Josh Donaldson managed to get ejected while hitting a home run.

Donaldson barked at plate umpire Dan Bellino for the second time in the sixth inning of a 4-3 loss to the Chicago White Sox on Thursday.

With the score 2-2, Bellino called a strike when the 2015 AL MVP checked his swing on a 2-0 pitch from Reynaldo Lopez.

Manager Rocco Baldelli came out to speak with Bellino, and Donaldson homered down the left-field line on the next offering. After rounding the bases, Donaldson kicked dirt at home plate as he crossed it.

Bellino ejected him immediately, and Donaldson, realizing he had missed home plate, returned to the plate to touch it and then argued as he kicked more dirt on it.

Donaldson also had argued with Bellino on a 1-1 breaking ball in the first inning that appeared to be high but was called a strike, leading to a strikeout.

“We need Josh on the field, out there playing, and at third base,” Baldelli said. “That’s when we’re at our best. And so that’s really the end of it. I think we can move past it at his point, and go from here.”

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