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Madson's intent on HBP unclear to Votto

First baseman is out of lineup for finale in order to rest after Saturday's doubleheader
MLB.com

WASHINGTON -- A day after Ryan Madson hit Joey Votto in the right leg with a 96.2-mph fastball during the Reds' 6-2 loss to the Nationals on Saturday night at Nationals Park, Votto said he doesn't know whether Madson's pitch was intentional.

Votto fell to the ground after getting hit near his right knee in the eighth inning. About four seconds later, the 34-year-old walked up the first-base line while staring and yelling toward Madson, and he continued to do so while standing at first base. Votto also exchanged words with Nationals first baseman Matt Adams.

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WASHINGTON -- A day after Ryan Madson hit Joey Votto in the right leg with a 96.2-mph fastball during the Reds' 6-2 loss to the Nationals on Saturday night at Nationals Park, Votto said he doesn't know whether Madson's pitch was intentional.

Votto fell to the ground after getting hit near his right knee in the eighth inning. About four seconds later, the 34-year-old walked up the first-base line while staring and yelling toward Madson, and he continued to do so while standing at first base. Votto also exchanged words with Nationals first baseman Matt Adams.

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At the end of the top of the eighth inning, Votto waved toward the Nationals' dugout while walking back to the Reds' dugout, prompting home-plate umpire Andy Fletcher to issue a warning to both clubs.

"My reaction kind of falls in line with [not knowing Madson's intent]," said Votto, who addressed the issue for the first time Sunday morning, since he left the clubhouse before reporters arrived Saturday night.

Madson said Saturday he didn't mean to hit Votto.

"I never want to hurt a guy. Never," Madson said. "So, glad he's OK."

Madson and Votto were Reds teammates during the 2012 season, but Madson didn't play due to Tommy John surgery. Votto said he doesn't know Madson well.

"Once you step into that box, you accept getting hit could very well be a part of the process," Votto said. "Things like that happen. More than anything, being down by four runs was frustrating."

Austin Brice hit Bryce Harper's right leg with an 82-mph curveball in the sixth inning, but Harper said Brice apologized. Jesus Reyes' second Major League pitch, a 96-mph sinker, struck Spencer Kieboom in the stomach in the seventh inning.

Video: CIN@WSH: Harper gets HBP on right leg, later exits

"The pitches that their guys were hit on were clearly no intent," Reds interim manager Jim Riggleman said. "I don't remember ever feeling like somebody got thrown at in any game. When you think you're getting thrown at, then maybe that's when you throw at somebody else. But to get hit by a pitch a couple times in your order and then decide you're going to hit somebody, to me that's wrong."

Votto wasn't in the lineup for the Reds' series-finale against the Nationals on Sunday afternoon, but Riggleman said that's due to normal fatigue after Votto played both games of Saturday's doubleheader. Votto pinch-hit in the ninth inning of the 2-1 loss and struck out against Kelvin Herrera to end the game.

Kyle Melnick is a reporter for MLB.com based in Washington.

Cincinnati Reds, Joey Votto