Joey Votto has reached base at least *twice* in 19 straight games.
NINETEEN. STRAIGHT. GAMES.
He is absolutely on fire and the best way to slow him down would be to simply not show up to the ballpark.
But since the Cubs are in a pennant race and in the midst of a four-game set against Votto's Reds, they don't have the luxury of not showing up.
So how do you get Votto out?
Joe Maddon and his coaching staff went full 12-inch softball, moving Kris Bryant to left-center field, giving the Cubs four outfielders in Votto's fifth inning at-bat. We've seen plenty of infield shifts in baseball over the last few years, but an outfield shift? That's a rarity.
Kyle Schwarber played left-left, Bryant in left-center, Jon Jay in right-center and Jason Heyward in right-right.
Here's photographic evidence:
Joey Votto: Breaker of shifts. pic.twitter.com/57lh5lrhRM— MLB (@MLB) August 15, 2017
And what does Votto do?
Grounds one just inside the first-base line and pulls up for a double. He went up against four outfielders and still wound up with an extra-base hit. Of course, even if the Cubs had four infielders, that ball still would've wound up as a double.
Votto is hitting .316 on the season with a .446 on-base percentage, 31 homers and 83 RBI.
Just another day of fun at the ole ballpark for this guy:
Hey, Joey ... you alright bud? pic.twitter.com/1zmuTo0IeC— Baseball is Fun (@flippingbats) August 15, 2017