Just how good of a season is Joey Votto having?

A few comments lately got me to thinking about how Votto's current season stacks up against some of the best seasons this franchise has seen.  Particularly, this little bit of fawning from Charlie Scrabbles:

i just realized

we are watching one of the best hitters in baseball right now. i dont think ive ever got to witness such greatness. i think this is much bigger than i previously thought.

Turns out, he's right.  Let's assume, just for fun, that Joey maintains his current rates (HR,BB,K, AVG, etc) for the rest of the season.  Following would be his end of the season stats and how they would rank amongst the all-time best single seasons by a Reds player.

Category

Total

Rank

Home Runs

42

7th

Total Bases

352

6th

On Base Percentage

.423

11th

Slugging

.599

9th

OPS

1.023

5th

OPS+

170

6th

Joey doesn't look to crack the top 10 in many traditional offensive categories like RBI, hits, or batting average, but a look at these numbers makes it clear that he's in the midst of one of the best seasons ever by a Redleg.  It's interesting to me that he's only 11th and 9th in OBP and SLG, respectively, but is 5th in OPS.  That speaks to the fact that he's having one of the most complete offensive seasons a Red has ever had and is keeping the company of players like Frank Robinson, Ted Kluszewski, and Joe Morgan.  

Now, this is just a piece of off-day fluff, as many things can happen for the rest of the year and the above numbers are far from a sure thing.  Still, it's scary that Joey is only 26 and has improved his patience and power each season so far.

So here's the discussion question for this evening.  If you are Walt Jocketty, what kind of deal are you offering Joey in the offseason?  He's entering his first year of arbitration, so do you go year to year?  Buy out his 3 arb years?  Lock him up until he's 40?  As a frame of reference, Votto and Ryan Howard will have posted very similar numbers entering their arb years, although Howard was a year older when he got his $10 million dollar reward.  So what does Joey get?

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