Herald news services
GOODYEAR, Ariz. — First baseman Joey Votto has agreed to a 10-year, $225 million extension with the Cincinnati Reds, the USA Today reported Monday.
Votto played in a 2-1 loss to the Cleveland Indians on Monday that completed spring training. Afterward, he declined to get into specifics about the discussions, or to say how close they were to completing the deal.
“Ask Walt about that,” he said, referring to general manager Walt Jocketty, who didn’t immediately return a message.
The Reds tried to sign Votto to a long-term deal after he led them to the NL Central title and won the NL MVP award in 2010. Instead, they settled for a three-year, $38 million deal that avoided salary arbitration and kept Votto under contract through 2013.
The 28-year-old first baseman has base salaries of $9.5 million this year and $17 million in 2013. He batted .309 last season with 28 homers and 103 RBIs, making the All-Star team for the second straight year.
The Reds have tried to lock up the young nucleus of their playoff team with multiyear deals. Outfielder Jay Bruce received a six-year, $51 million deal after the 2010 season.
Two other NL Central first basemen left their teams to get enormous deals in the offseason. Albert Pujols, who helped St. Louis win the World Series, signed a 10-year, $240 million deal with the Angels in December. Milwaukee’s Prince Fielder got a nine-year, $214 million contract from the Tigers in January.