LOS ANGELES -- By design, Reds first baseman Joey Votto says very little about injuries or how bothered he is by them. All anyone needed to know on Tuesday was that Votto was back in the lineup vs. the Dodgers.
"I'm not 100 percent, but I can play," Votto said. "I'm well enough to go without causing any more trouble."
Votto missed games on Sunday and Monday with inflammation in his left knee. The injury happened while he was sliding into third base on Friday at San Francisco.
There was no MRI performed, Votto said. He told head trainer Paul Lessard he could play, and Lessard relayed that to manager Dusty Baker, who put Votto in the third spot of the lineup. Votto still planned to meet with Baker.
"I want to speak to Dusty face to face. He's the manager," Votto said. "It's a courtesy all players owe to the manager."
Votto entered Tuesday batting .350 with 14 home runs and 47 RBIs this season. His 33 doubles and .471 on-base percentage lead the Majors.
"It was determined between him and our medical staff, whatever 100 percent is," Baker said. "The later you get in the season, the less chance you have of anybody being 100 percent. Anybody that's played every day has played a lot. You're not going to be 100 percent until probably Nov. 28, if even then."
Cozart cleared to play after being struck in head
LOS ANGELES -- Shortstop Zack Cozart is extremely fortunate. Cozart, who was struck in the helmet by a Chad Billingsley fastball on Monday and suffered a mild concussion, was back in the Reds' lineup vs. the Dodgers on Tuesday.
Cozart was cleared by doctors after showing no lingering symptoms.
"I woke up this morning still with a slight headache," Cozart said Tuesday afternoon. "My condition never got worse. It's gotten a lot better. I don't have the tension in my head anymore. I don't have the pressure up there. I feel completely normal."
Doctors had Cozart take a concussion test on Monday night after he was removed in the fifth inning of Cincinnati's 8-2 win over the Dodgers. He passed and it was determined he did not need a CT scan.
"When the doctors came in during the game, they asked me questions and I had to do balance stuff and memory stuff. I think I did pretty good," Cozart said.
"He said he's OK and our guys say he's OK," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "One thing, he's not the first guy that got hit in the head. Thank God for these new-and-improved helmets that they have. It looked like he lost sight of it, really, because he did not get out of the way. I'm sure if he had seen it the whole way, he would have hit the dirt or turned away from it."
Baker taking struggles by Stubbs in stride
LOS ANGELES -- Reds center fielder Drew Stubbs came into Tuesday's game vs. the Dodgers mired in an 0-for-20 skid and was 3-for-26 in eight games since he returned from the disabled list. Stubbs had been out with a strained left oblique muscle but had returned with three hits, including a homer, in his first two games off of the DL.
Reds manager Dusty Baker didn't believe Stubbs, who came in batting .222 for the season, was showing effects from the injury.
"He said he's feeling good," Baker said. "A lot of times when you're off, you come back quick and you're timing is still off. Plus, we've been facing [Matt] Cain, [Madison] Bumgarner and you're going to be off sometimes whether you're healthy or not. We knew coming into this stretch we would see some good pitching."