Votto on argument with Brewers catcher: ‘Really, it was nothing’

The Reds’ Joey Votto and Brewers catcher Erik Kratz exchange words at home plate in the third inning on Thursday, June 28, 2018, at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati. David Jablonski/Staff
Caption
The Reds’ Joey Votto and Brewers catcher Erik Kratz exchange words at home plate in the third inning on Thursday, June 28, 2018, at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati. David Jablonski/Staff

Benches clear as Votto, Kratz exchange words

Joey Votto described it as a home-plate conversation, and he’s had thousands of them in his Cincinnati Reds career.

Votto talked to home-plate umpire Roberto Ortiz about a called strike in the third inning Thursday. Then Milwaukee Brewers catcher Erik Kratz said something to Votto. Votto and Kratz began arguing. Before they knew it, players from both benches had surrounded them at Great American Ball Park. Even the relievers sprinted in from the bullpens.

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There were no punches thrown or even any shoves. There were more hugs and smiles than anything as players on the outside of the circle of players joked with each other.

“There was just a little bit of a misunderstanding at the plate,” Votto said after the Reds lost 6-4. “Other than both of us standing our ground, there was really nothing to it. I’ve played against him for a while. We’re both grown. I think we can say our piece and move on from it. I think it escalated into something that’s pretty standard for (baseball). Two people have a disagreement and then both sides get into the middle of it, but really, it was nothing.”

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This incident came a day after Votto was ejected in the first inning for arguing about a called strike three in Atlanta.

“Really, more than anything, there’s a common tug of war at the plate,” Votto said. “It’s been that way since I entered the league, since I started playing professional baseball. Balls and strikes are always at a premium. I’m just trying my very best to make sure I get a quality pitch to hit. If that doesn’t come about, then I take first on a walk. (Wednesday) I was pretty clear about going too far, but at no point today was it anything along those lines.”

Injury update: Nick Senzel, the top prospect in the Reds organization, underwent surgery Thursday to reduce the fracture in his right index injury, the Reds announced.

There was no damage to the tendon in the finger. The first report indicated Senzel had torn the tendon in the finger. Dr. Thomas Graham performed the surgery in New York City.

There is no timetable for Senzel's return. He suffered the injury Friday while playing for Triple-A Louisville, and the Reds announced he would miss the rest of the season.

Senzel, the No. 2 pick in the 2016 draft, hit .310 with six home runs and 25 RBIs in 44 games this season.

» REDS NEWS: Senzel has surgery | Suarez trying to enjoy moment | Casali thriving in backup role

Hot bats: Through Wednesday, in the last 15 games, the Reds were hitting .270 and averaging six runs per game.

The Reds infield led the big leagues in batting average (.289) and on-base percentage (.367). Scooter Gennett led the league with a .336 average. Jose Peraza was hitting .270. Joey Votto and Eugenio Suarez were each hitting .301.

“We’ve got a good team,” third baseman Eugenio Suarez said. “We’ve got a good offense. We’re hot right now. We’re playing good baseball, and we’re trying to enjoy this moment. Now we’ve got an opportunity to win a lot of games.”

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