Marlon Byrd was the unsung (well, he was a little sung) hero of Tuesday’s National League All-Star Game win. He battled in a long 7th inning at bat, which led to a walk, extended the inning, and eventually yielded the winning runs.

Then, in the 9th inning, protecting a two run lead, Byrd made a tremendous play in right field – where he does not regularly play – taking a bloop fly ball on the hop, wheeling, and firing a one-bounce strike to second base to cut down David Ortiz. Who was coming from first.

You’d think everyone on the NL All-Star team would be grateful for Byrd’s performance, particularly those players who are on teams that actually have a chance to make the World Series, where Byrd had just helped win them home field advantage.

But nope. Not Joey Votto.

“I don’t like the Cubs,” Votto said. “And I’m not going to pat anybody with a Cubs uniform on the back. But because he made that really cool play, it turned out to be a really cool experience. I’m really glad we got the win today.” ESPN Chicago.

What the hell was Votto thinking? I get that the Cubs are a division rival, but when you’re on an All-Star team, working together to win for your league – for the first time in 15 years, mind you – it’s ridiculous to think of your teammates as the enemy.

He’s either monumentally stupid or a monumental douche. Votto’s huge 2010 season following a 2009 season where he struggled with anxiety issues had been one of the better stories this year. Now, he can floss my butt.

UPDATE: According to Paul Sullivan, Marlon Byrd says he talked to Votto more than anyone else during the All-Star weekend, and believes that Votto was just kidding. Hard to tell without hearing the tone – if he was kidding, feel free to take a dump on ESPN Chicago’s Bruce Levine for not picking up on the joke.

  • bric

    Looks like the Reds have a Carlos Zambrano junior on their hands. But the real question is did anyone else hear the comment made when Ryan Braun made the diving catch in left? Someone with an open mike (I think it was Brandon Phillips) said “He could’ve ran to it. He’s just diving for the cameras.” If it was then clearly Dusty’s putting together a classy bunch of ballplayers. I wasn’t really paying attention. Did anyone else hear that?

    • jstraw

      I didn’t just hear it. I heard it as a replay. McCarver and Buck went to it as a feature…like…”we have a mic on so-and-so…let’s hear what he had to say after that play…” I didn’t realize the mic was on Votto.

      And Ace, when you say, “He’s either monumentally stupid or a monumental douche.” I completely disagree. It’s not binary.

  • Cardfan

    You left off the possibility that he is a monumentally stupid douche. Seems the most likely scenario to me.

  • xolager


    You’re not supposed to like division rivals, and although the all-star game “counts”, it’s not enough to give me a raging boner for Matt Holliday or Corey Hart.

    In the ASG, I hope that the NL players I normally root against just don’t suck for their couple of innings. It sounds like that’s all Votto is doing as well.

    • jstraw

      A teammate for a day is still a teammate and a person isn’t the uniform they wear. You could wind up on the same roster as any other player at any time. Votto could have made a joke out of the only day in the year he doesn’t have to hate a rival…instead he just showed he’s an immature prick with absolutely no class. If the All-Star game isn’t collegial then it shouldn’t exist.

      Which brings me to the issue of the game actually counting for something. Yes, I understand it raises interest and interest is revenue…but it’s a travesty. The managers can’t manage the game to win…they have to get pretty much everyone into the game. This means, first and foremost pulling pitchers for no real baseball reason.

      Selig is a bigger douche than Votto.

      • xolager

        “absolutely no class”

        Hyperbole much?

        • jstraw

          No. He has absolutely no class. That’s about as classless a douche-move as can be, dissing an all-star teammate that made a big contribution toward achieving a home field advantage that his team is competing to benefit from. I can see it if there’s a personal history involved but from a guy on a first-place team directed at a guy on a team that’s season is toast? Come on. And for what it’s worth…Cubs nation had no idea that they were the Reds’ hated rivals until this dick opened his mouth. WTF?

          I stand by my statement. No. Class.

  • Lokanna

    I can see both sides. On one hand, if I were a Reds fan (god forbid!), I’d want my star to hate the division rivals with as much passion as Votto. On the flip side though, I wish I were alive for the old All-Star games of the 40s-60s where the leagues truly wanted to beat the other for pride.

    I realize Selig thinks this format works, and to be honest, in the current financial climate of the game (free agency, no team loyalty, etc), he’s probably found the best solution out of only a handful of real options. However, if you want the game to really mean something, get some sort of HEAVY incentive in the CBA that would make a player think twice about switching leagues/teams. I’ve always thought that if a player came up with the same club, spent the first half of his career with them, then the final contract(s) of his career should not count against the salary cap/luxury tax (still think they should have a cap) for that team.

    Think about it; the player would want to stick with a team to get to the period where the team could really pay him without worry of a cap/tax hit and thus, maybe he’d stay for a couple million less. I dunno, just shootin’ the breeze…

  • Kenny L.

    The “he dove for the cameras” comment was by Ryan Howard, and he was joking around.

    • jstraw

      I stand corrected. Votto is still an asshole.

    • bric

      Thanks for clearing it up. But I heard the comment and it didn’t sound like he was kidding. He basically just sounded like an arrogant douche.

  • ed

    I would like to pee in his batting helmet.

  • Team Roster

    Maybe you could edit the webpage name title So, Joey Votto’s Kind of a Douche | Bleacher Nation | Chicago Cubs News, Rumors, and Commentary to more better for your blog post you write. I loved the the writing withal.

  • Marsh

    Cubs fans are just hating because they suck balls and are in the bottom half of the league almost every year now. It’s just like a high school all star game, i didn’t make a huge deal off of my rivals plays either. It’s just something that happens so get over it

    • Serious Cubs Fan

      Haha wat r u a sox fan? You cant even fill up your own ball park wit a good team to watch! Sox fan are probably the worst fans ever. They show no support and are louzy baseball people. Example A right here being Marsh