Joey Votto starts bid for Blue Jays roster spot in best way possible [VIDEO]

Cincinnati Reds v Toronto Blue Jays
Cincinnati Reds v Toronto Blue Jays / Cole Burston/GettyImages

Former NL MVP and Toronto-native Joey Votto just made a big spring training splash, homering on the first pitch of his first at-bat in a Jays uniform. Votto couldn't have made a louder entrance, and if the hype continues, he very well may see himself still in a Blue Jays uniform come April.

Votto, although a decorated MLB vet, is hoping to land a roster spot among other minor-league invitees such as Daniel Vogelbach and Eduardo Escobar. This homerun was certainly a step in the right direction, coming off of Phillies ace Zack Wheeler at 392 feet with a an exit velocity of 103.5 MPH. Even at age 40, Votto still presents the Jays with the tools that shot him into stardom: big left-handed power with strong homerun capability. With the lack of power coming from last year's lineup, Votto's presence in the lineup could be an impactful one.

Votto's story through the major leagues has been one to tell. Spending 17 years with the Cincinnati Reds, earning six all-star nods and an MVP award later, Votto gets to play in the very city in which he grew up.

Votto has had his woes over the past couple seasons, dealing with injury and advancing age. But despite this, he's still held his own. He hit an impressive 14 home runs in only 208 at-bats last year. Two years prior, he had 36, even while missing about 30 games. He managed to do this while still maintaining league-average stats, batting for a respectable .747 OPS in 2023. Strikeouts were a slight issue for Votto last year, as he had close to a career-high 25.6 K%. However, Votto managed to compensate this with a 11.2 BB%, which grades out close to the 80th percentile.

Votto's role on the team would be similar to that of Brandon Belt's, a presence that will be quite missed. Like Belt, Votto would give the Jays a relatively cheap lefty home run hitter who will provide a quality at-bat. While Votto will need more plate appearances, things are off to a great start. If this could work out, his venture would not only provide the Jays lineup with much needed depth, but fans with a hometown hero they can root for.