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08/20/09 12:26 PM ET
Votto returns to lineup after vision scare
Slugger feeling better after retinal migraine diagnosis
By Mark Sheldon / MLB.com
CINCINNATI -- With the scare of blurred vision seemingly cleared, Joey Votto was back in the Reds' lineup on Thursday vs. the Giants. "I'm so glad," manager Dusty Baker said on Thursday morning. "We're definitely not the same without Joey in the lineup." On Wednesday, Votto was diagnosed with a retinal migraine by an optometrist after blurred vision forced him out of the Reds' 1-0 loss to the Giants after the top of the first inning. It started between the end of a rain delay and the first pitch. "A blurry spot popped up and it really expanded during the inning," Votto said. "I told Dusty on the pop up that I would have to come out of the game. About 25 minutes after I came out of the game and saw the doctor, I kind of laid down and it dissipated and a heavy headache popped up. "I'm better today. My head is a little sore as far as having a headache. I'm alright." Votto was not given any medication to correct the issue. He's also never experienced anything like this before. "That's why it was so scary," Votto said. "Nearly half of the vision in my left eye was blurry. I wouldn't say gone but I couldn't see anything." Votto entered Thursday batting a team-leading .316 with 59 RBIs in 89 games and tied for the team lead with 18 home runs. But the best way to describe his season might be "unique." The 25-year-old Votto had some physical issues that you wouldn't normally see on a baseball injury report. He's had an inner ear infection that gave dizzy spells and that later graduated to anxiety that forced him out of games. He missed 21 games on the disabled list because of stress and depression related to the sudden death of his father one year ago. Votto felt that Wednesday's issue was not related to what he went through earlier this season. "No, I don't think so," Votto said. "The doctor said it could be stress related. It's been kind of stressful lately with all the losing. I'm not going to say yes or no on that one. It was a really odd occurrence and I hope it doesn't happen again."
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.