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It’s not goodbye, it’s see you later

Christian Encarnacion-Strand clubbed a homer into left-center with one out in the Bottom of the 8th inning on Sunday, in the process giving the Cincinnati Reds an insurance run that, after recent implosions, felt as vital as any they’d had all season. A 4-2 lead was then had, and after the next batter up singled up the middle, Reds manager David Bell sent the speedy Stu Fairchild out as a pinch runner - as one does in that situation, of course.

The nuance of it all was quite different, however. The single up the gut, a liner into CF on an 89 mph slider, came off the bat of Joey Votto, the 40 year old generational face of the Reds who was playing his final game in GABP of the 2023 season - a season that marks his final under guaranteed contract with the Reds.