Votto (shoulder/biceps) said prior to Saturday's Cactus League game that he could open the 2023 season on the injured list, Bobby Nightengale of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. "I just want to make sure I'm clear: This is a performance-based game," Votto said. "You have to do your job. And I can't come back early, tank and embarrass our organization. I have to come back, perform well and be healthy."

Votto has been able to play for two weeks in the Cactus League after recovering from a torn rotator cuff and left biceps surgery that ended his 2023 season. As Nightengale notes, however, Votto is still in the process of reaching enough at-bats and defensive innings to feel comfortable enough for the beginning of the season. Votto should thus be in line for a short stint on the IL if he isn't cleared to break camp with the big club, but the assumption that he would be ready for the start of the season may have been slightly premature.

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