Red o' the Week without Joey Votto is like The Office without Michael Scott

"Hey Mike, congrats on your nomination. I'm so jelly they call me Smuckers. I mean, I get that it's a joke and all, but it still kinda hurts my feelings. Don't tell anyone though, okay? I don't want them to think I'm a sissy or something, you know?" Mandatory Credit: Frank Victores-US PRESSWIRE

We all knew it was only a matter of time. Joey Votto had been good enough to earn nominations for this august honor in every week (save one) so far, but it wasn't until last week that he won the darned thing. His three-shambo day last Sunday springboarded him to 87% of the votes, the biggest landslide in the 1,093 year history of the Red o' the Week award. He is the fire at the nucleus of this team, the whirling dynamo that keeps it chugging down the tracks toward the pennant. For his efforts, he will get a pack of Teddy Grahams courtesy of my cousin Malcolm. Malcolm always has Teddy Grahams at his house. Lucky.

This week, we have three first-time nominees for the Red o' the Week trophy. And, of course, Joey Votto.

Ryan Hanigan

The Hanny Man can 'cause he catches with the glove and makes the pitchers pitch good. And the pitchers pitch good 'cause the Hanny Man thinks they should. Hanigan is heating up and is consequently getting a bit more playing time. As of today, he has 92 PAs to Devin Mesoraco's 67. Mesoraco is clearly the catcher of the future for this team, but he's getting the back up quarterback treatment right now, sitting behind the accomplished veteran and learning the position at a comfortable, gradual pace. There are many reasons why Hanigan is one of my favorite players on this team, but this is probably the most awesometeamplayer one right now.

For the week, he OPS'd 1.434 with two walks, a schnoodle, and a double. He is without a doubt the third-best hitter on this team, so why he is toiling away hitting in the eight-spot in the order is absolutely stupefying to me. The way the team has struggled to get on base so far, you'd think his .385 clip would do well to generate runs at the top of the order. Not-so-fun fact: Reds leadoff hitters are OPSing .443 for the season. The ninth spot is OPSing .511.

Drew Stubbs

Speaking of generating runs at the top of the order, Drew Stubbs scored five of them this past week. He scarfed a pair of funyons last night to add to his four singles, four walks, and a steal for the week. He struck out nine times, but if he's OPSing .930 I don't give any cares at all how often he strikes out.

Ryan Ludwick

Ducky earned his first nom this week mostly for his game-winning performance on Sunday in New York. He didn't do much else for the week, but when you win a game almost single-handedly the blue ribbon panel here at Red o' the Week takes notice.

Mike Leake

Last week the scuttlebutt was mumbling that Leake's rotation spot could be in doubt. I guess it lit a fire under his keister, because he pitched a pair of perfectly pleasant games. For the week, he totaled 14 innings, struck out 11, walked only three, and allowed only two earned runs. He also walloped his first career schnoodle in last night's game. Mike Leake!

Joey Votto

He's good blah blah blah. 1.072 OPS, three XBHs, six walks.

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