In the aftermath of Tuesday night's Reds-Cardinals brawl, Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips is maintaining the sentiment that fueled the animosity between the two teams:
"The comments I made yesterday, those are my comments," Phillips said. "I said those things and I really mean what I said. The Cardinals, they're a great team. They're the team to beat, like I've said a million times. But we have to beat them."
Phillips, if you remember, called the Cardinals "little bitches" earlier in the week; here, he says he really means it while simultaneously backing down a little. Meanwhile, Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina, who confronted Phillips prior to his first plate appearance in Tuesday's game, explained his motives.
"He talked bad about my team, he talked bad about me," Molina said on a postgame interview with Fox Sports Midwest. "Don't talk bad and come up and say 'hi' to me. That's stupid."
The Reds' veteran third baseman, Scott Rolen, initially tried to break up the fight before re-igniting the brawl himself.
“It was two teams standing up for their own players and managers,” he said. “It got ugly… I was exhausted … I needed (super sub Miguel) Cairo before my first at-bat.”
With such a crowded, flailing mass of players, there was a serious risk of injury to the players involved. Reds pitcher Johnny Cueto, allegedly in an act of self-defense, gave the Cardinals the business end of his cleats. His battery mate, catcher Ramon Hernandez, said:
“He was trying to break things up (at first), then as soon as he knew he had 20 people pushing him up against the net,” said Reds catcher Ramon Hernandez, translating. “He got scared … nervous, a lot. His back was to the wall. He was trying to get people out of the way so he could get out.”
Suspensions, if there will be any, have not yet been announced. But while the details of the brawl's fallout is yet to be determined, it's clear that the bad blood between these teams has become, um, even worse blood. With these two teams in the home stretch of a hotly-contested N.L. Central race, this feud isn't going away anytime soon. Throughout the season, keep track of the drama with our Reds blog, Red Reporter, and our Cardinals blog, Viva El Birdos.