Apparently Reds fans are a pretty determined bunch of people.
Just ask Joey Votto.
The Cincinnati Reds first baseman, snubbed by initial voting by fans and by National League coach Jerry Manuel, won the fans' voting for the final spot on this year's squad.
Votto beat out Washington's Ryan Zimmerman, Colorado's Carlos Gonzalez and Atlanta's Billy Wagner. San Diego's Heath Bell was the fifth finalist, but was selected as the replacement for injured Brewers' right-hander Yovani Gallardo.
Votto received 13.7 million votes, the most of any players in either the National or American League voting. Nick Swisher edged out Kevin Youkilis of the Red Sox for the American League vote with 9.8 million.
Votto was only the second player in the top-five in batting average, home runs and RBI not to be named to an All-Star Team since 1957. Baltimore's Boog Powell also didn't make the All-Star Team in 1966.
In a very "me first" era, just ask LeBron James, Cincinnati Reds players even did their part in raising awareness for voters in Votto's chase for the mid-season classic. Facing the Mets on Wednesday, Reds players wore Vote Votto t-shirts during batting practice before the game.
Reds interested in Cliff Lee?
Hmm, on reports that have begun to surface that Cincinnati could be interested in trading for Cliff Lee, I'm still a bit on the fence.
While I'm certainly not accustomed to the Reds being in the market to add players rather than sell them off, I'm a bit hesitant to give away the farm, or rather the prospects from the farm team.
The price is reportedly pretty steep for Lee, which isn't surprising considering his ability, but then again, he is a free agent after this season. Though the addition of a true "ace" would certainly boost the Reds postseason hopes, especially with Aaron Harang on the disabled list with back spasms. However, the Reds have spent years building the farm system after the disaster that was Marge Schott. Finally they have the pieces in place to at least be in discussions for a trade like this, but the Mariners have interest in some close to major league ready players.
The Reds have first baseman Yonder Alonso, a first round pick that is with Louisville and is behind Votto for the foreseeable future and both Todd Frazier and Juan Francisco are potential trade bait too. Seattle would likely want pitching too, which means Matt Maloney and Travis Wood are in the cross hairs too. All this being said, how far are the Reds willing to go for a shot to win this year? While I'd love to have a legit shot to win a pennant or another World Series, but I'd rather be able to compete for years rather than 'going all in' for just this season.