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Kung fu Cueto emerges as brawl villain

Aug 11, 2010, 2:53 AM EDT

One interesting result of the big Cardinals-Reds square dance on Tuesday night – aside from the fact that only the managers were ejected, is that Brandon Phillips was not the one to emerge as Public Enemy No. 1.

(You can see different videos of the brawl here, here and here.) 

The real post-brawl villain was Cincinnati kicker – I mean pitcher – Johnny Cueto, who went all kung fu in a panic after he was shoved against the net behind home plate. Cueto said he was trying to protect himself, but the Cardinals said he was reckless in lashing out with his cleats, giving St. Louis pitcher Chris Carpenter some scrapes on his back and sides, and catcher Jason LaRue a potential concussion.

From John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer:

“All I know is we exchanged words and the next thing I know I was in the net with somebody kicking me in the back from behind,” Chris Carpenter said. “I wasn’t throwing any punches, nobody was throwing any punches, and then we’ve got some guy kicking me in the back and ends up kicking my backup catcher in the face and splitting his face open.

The Cardinals said LaRue may have a concussion.

“He could have done some real damage (on LaRue), he got him in the side of his eye, he got him in his nose, he got him in his face. Totally unprofessional. Unbelievable. I’ve never seen anything like that. He got kicked square in the side of the face with spikes. C’mon, give me a break.”

Like on Monday, the Cardinals got the last laugh, winning 8-4 to move into first place in the NL Central. Cueto (11-3) took the loss, allowing five runs (four earned) and 5.1 innings.

Now we’ve got some serious juice in this division race, a race that some think could go all the way to the end. The teams lock horns again on Wednesday, then again for a three-game series in St. Louis in early September. Buckle up folks, it’s going to be a fun ride.

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  1. McGee - Aug 11, 2010 at 3:39 AM

    unbelievable, the huge amount of pussihood by the Reds

  2. MVD - Aug 11, 2010 at 4:41 AM

    Right, cuz the Reds are the crybaby team that whines about slippery baseballs.

  3. ultimatecardinalwarrior - Aug 11, 2010 at 6:20 AM


  4. Robert - Aug 11, 2010 at 6:37 AM

    Go Reds…but whether they go on to win the division or not, Phillips is an utter moron. A Reds-Cards rivalry wasn’t going to develop into openly bad blood because both teams are too classy for that, especially given how many ex-players the two has. Phillips tried to create bad blood, thus making him a moron, and Dusty should have slapped the stupid out of him for doing so. I was hoping that going 1-for-10 with a strikeout so far in the series will do what no one else can (give Phillips a dose of common sense), but I’m not holding my breath. Becoming a smurf isn’t on my bucket list.

  5. willmose - Aug 11, 2010 at 7:55 AM

    Who do you think put Phillips up to this? Baker, it is the way he rolls.

  6. grant - Aug 11, 2010 at 8:21 AM

    I can’t believe someone mentioned classy with referring to Dusty Baker and Tony LaRussa. Classy?? Really?

  7. adam - Aug 11, 2010 at 8:29 AM

    So LaRussa calls Cueto kicking “unprofessional”, but a bunch of guys running at each other screaming and being idiots doesn’t qualify as unprofessional? Look in the mirror.

  8. interestedobserver - Aug 11, 2010 at 8:37 AM

    WOW – Phillips was right, they are a bunch of whiners. Molina started the whole thing and even the Cardinal announcers said Carpenter was an instigator. What was Cueto supposed to do, get smashed up against the net or try to save himself?

  9. Paper Lions - Aug 11, 2010 at 8:43 AM

    Did you watch the video? Cueto wasn’t threatened at all (plus he was the one that ran to get behind Carpenter, no one pushed him there) and went spikes up kicking at players.
    Molina didn’t start anything. Phillips talked shit and then tried to tap his shin guards? Really? You “hate me” and we are “whiney bitches” but then want to give a friendly “let’s have a good game” pat? Get that shit out of here. Phillips is a punk. If you hate someone, then follow through and act like it.

  10. BC - Aug 11, 2010 at 9:10 AM

    Man, I love basebrawl. Nothing like a good-ol fashion donnybrook to liven things up. I’d love to see what happens if someone throws behind the back of a batter tonight. To quote Mills Lane, “Let’s get it on!!”.

  11. FlyEaglesFly - Aug 11, 2010 at 9:12 AM

    Cueto tried to go Otis Nixon on him. Remember that Braves fans…

  12. Sam Lee - Aug 11, 2010 at 9:22 AM

    lol, still doesn’t change the fact that the Cards are female dogs that constantly complain even if they have to invent things. Carpenter of all people shouldn’t complain. He’s more than willing to end someone’s career by hitting them. I guess like Dave Duncan says about using illegal substances to pitch better, that’s “gamesmanship.”

  13. Florioisanidiot1 - Aug 11, 2010 at 9:32 AM

    Cards start a fight, the starting pitcher defends himself, and he’s the bad guy?
    Phillips shouldn’t have said what he said, but Molina’s the one that lit the fuse in this whole thing.

  14. Dan - Aug 11, 2010 at 9:35 AM

    When Carpenter starts kicking at the opposing players he’ll be down on Cueto’s level.
    How can any Cincinnati fan not be embarrassed at the way Cueto fights?

  15. Dan - Aug 11, 2010 at 9:39 AM

    Molina is playing with a sore shin and Phillips wants to tap him on the shinguards? I don’t care if it wasn’t going to hurt Molina it was stupid of Phillips to even think about it after shooting off his mouth.
    And Cueto fights like a girl. No, that’s an insult to girls. He fights like a baby.

  16. The Real Shuxion - Aug 11, 2010 at 9:40 AM

    Those fists are fast as lightning.

  17. Florioisanidiot1 - Aug 11, 2010 at 10:02 AM

    Dan, hundreds of players throughout the league tap the catcher on the shinguards on their way up to the plate. There’s nothing to it.
    And don’t try for once second to sit there and he tapped him anywhere near hard enough to effect a sore shin.
    Phillips said something stupid, can’t deny that. Bottom of the first, Molina proved he was a little b!tch.

  18. Bull Durham - Aug 11, 2010 at 10:21 AM

    I apologize for interrupting all this fun to take the high road but I’m utterly amazed this stuff happens. These are all grown men at their workplace where they earn millions of dollars and their livelihoods depend in part on their health. So, why not run around pushing, shoving, and kicking each other all because one guy called the other guys names? If it were me, I’d be a little reluctant to risk my incredibly fortunate lot in life over a name-calling spat with a jackass, but hey, I guess I’m a just a little bitch.

  19. Dikta's Lost Perm - Aug 11, 2010 at 10:34 AM

    Cueto was scared because he thought Pujols would go into a Roid Rage and start cleaning house

  20. Dan in Katonah - Aug 11, 2010 at 10:48 AM

    Well testosterone (natural and otherwise) does tend to flow in competition, even if you are multimillionaires.
    I agree that Phillips was delusional to think he could go off on the Cards and then start the game with friendly tap of the shin guards. But I really do enjoy teams going out there and being antagonistic when there is a race on. I kind of get annoyed when I see players from opposite sidelines/benches getting all huggy before and after games. I want my team to go out there with an Eff-you attitude and try to beat the snot out of the other guys. Give me a Charles Oakley type any day. Fun to watch. Fun to root for. And fun to hate when he is not on your team. Keep keeping it real, Cincy.

  21. 10Championships - Aug 11, 2010 at 10:53 AM

    None of you would shake a mans hand, if he walked up and offered it, if he called you a little bitch the day before and said he hated you. If you did then you are spineless period!! BP started this whole thing and Molina was only doing what any SELFrespeciting man would do. BUT to all you Reds fans agreeing with BP and making all your snide comments give me a break! You haven’t won anything in 15 years while we are the defending Central champs. When you earn your smack talking by actuallywinning something then you can open your mouths but until then you get what the cards gave you, an ass whoopin on the field. Can anyone here say scoreboard? Hey Reds fans the brooms are out, call us all the names you want but you are about to be swept for this series and are 10-5 against on the years so far. You have zero room to talk and shooting your mouths off at a team that has beaten you up this year just makes you look stupid. GO CARDINALS… the defending NL Central Div Champs and 8 time Central Div Champs …the Reds? ZERO times Central Div Champs…uh huh you have room to talk…..

  22. CYGNUS X-1 - Aug 11, 2010 at 11:23 AM

    cards aren’t whiney bitches he?what’s the first thing st; larussa does after phillips pops off?run to the reds gm and cry about how his players talk!why do the reds and thier fans hate them?let’s see they win a series but lose a game and the reds pitcher who won is a cheater.never mind no other team complains about the baseballs but them the reds are cheaters.or the reds win a game that has a long rain delay,shouldn’t have been played and that’s the reason the reds won. or how about the fact cqarpenter is not happy being dominant he always has to whine about something even yelling at his own players.maybe phillips needs to keep his mouth shut but so do the cards

  23. Dan in Katonah - Aug 11, 2010 at 11:33 AM

    For what its worth, I don’t have a horse in this race. I reveiwed the last clip on the mlb site and I have to say, I think Cueto may be getting too much criticism.
    1. He only started kicking when he got crushed up against the fence and was facing a mob that was pushing him through the screen. I don’t think that anyone can say how they might react in that circumstance. Kick or get trampled? I’d kick, thank you.
    2. LaRue got kicked in the face because he was charging into Cueto. If you want to go head-long after a guy who is kicking out with his back against the wall, then don’t cry that you got kicked.
    Anyway, Reds and Cards fans, feel free to go at it.

  24. Omega - Aug 11, 2010 at 11:53 AM

    Hear hear! two of the biggest dirtbags in the game!

  25. Prionogenic Man - Aug 11, 2010 at 11:56 AM

    I also don’t care who wins in the Central and I agree with Dan. Cueto looked that he was just trying to separate Rolen and Carpenter (with La Rue) in between and as the pile moves, he had to move with it to avoid getting trampled and then ends up in the netting and at first he has just his feet up to prop himself up, but when La Rue comes into him, then he starts kicking (start at around 3:20 in the MLB video).
    The whole thing is stupid, but I don’t think Cueto deserves too much blame. He’s no hero, but if you end up in a scrum on your back, then kicking is the only thing you can do for protection. Also notice that Reds players jump right in between them to stop any serious damage from occurring. If players want to get off the benches into a big mob like that then you have to expect this. Don Zimmer is an example of this. Don’t go charging at someone and not expect something to happen.

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