Yadier Molina clearly was the instigator in the fight. Was his trash talk necessary after Brandon Phillips called the Cardinals “little bitches?” Something needed to be done, and that usually is accomplished via hit-by-pitch. Guess Molina was really pissed. After the benches emptied, order was quickly restored and it appeared to be just another overrated baseball skirmish. Then Scott Rolen went after former teammate Chris Carpenter.
Rolen went after Chris Carpenter. Carpenter and Johnny Cueto were shove against the net in front of the Diamond seats. Carpenter very nearly went down on his back. Cueto, the starting pitcher, could be seen kicking at someone. Former Red Jason LaRue was right in the middle of scrum. A report had Cueto kicking LaRue in the face. Dusty Baker was in the middle of it, shouting at Tony La Russa. La Russa and Baker have a history 2002 division series. A couple of players were in a pile on the ground. Jonny Gomes came out of it with a torn shirt.
The fight trapped pitcher Chris Carpenter against the backstop as Cueto began kicking wildly. Several kicks raked Carpenter’s back; at least one caught LaRue squarely in the face, resulting in significant bruising and what manager Tony La Russa called a concussion.
Oh, and the Cardinals won, 8-4, as the usually sure-handed Reds were sloppy and committed three errors. The guess here is that Phillips’ trash talk and the ensuing fight has rattled the Reds, who have lost their slim lead in the NL Central. Good luck salvaging the series against Adam Wainwright today. The teams will meet again the first weekend in September in St. Louis.
Elsewhere in baseball … the Yankees lost, allowing the Red Sox and Rays to gain ground; and the White Sox lost their third straight and have fallen into second place behind the Twins.