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Votto wins Lou Marsh Award as Canada's athlete of the year

Cincinnati Reds first baseman Joey Votto has won the 2010 Lou Marsh Award.

The honour - decided by a panel of sports editors, reporters and broadcasters - is given annually to Canada's outstanding athlete by the Toronto Star.

Votto became just the third Canadian to win one of baseball's most valuable player awards.

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The 27-year-old native of Toronto was a near unanimous choice for the National League award. He hit .324 with 37 home runs, 113 RBIs and 16 stolen bases last season.

Other finalists for the Marsh honour were hockey stars Sidney Crosby and Jonathan Toews, ice dancers Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, mixed martial artist Georges St-Pierre, figure skater Joannie Rochette, long-track speed skater Christine Nesbitt and freestyle skier Alexandre Bilodeau.

Crosby won the honour last year.

The panel featured representatives from the Toronto Star, CBC, CTV, The Fan 590, Globe and Mail, National Post, Rogers Sportsnet, TSN, Toronto Sun, Yahoo, Montreal's La Presse and The Canadian Press. Lou Marsh is a former Toronto Star sports editor.

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