August 29, 2010

Nyjer Morgan cheap shots Anderson in Nats rout of Redbirds

Centerfielder Nyjer Morgan of the Washington Nationals motored around third base in Saturday night's game versus the Cardinals and blindsided Cardinals' catcher Bryan Anderson in cheap shot fashion, leading many to wonder if there will be some sort of retaliation by the Cardinals in Sunday's afternoon game in DC.

Anderson had stepped forward into fair territory as Morgan sprinted for the plate, the lack of any play obvious. Morgan then angled hard toward Anderson, going so far out of his way toward home that he ended up missing the plate entirely. Morgan threw a forearm and shoulder into Anderson, giving a jolt hard enough to stagger him and make him drop his catcher's mitt. Anderson seemed okay, but things could have been far worse.

Most likely, Yadier Molina will return to the catching duties in Sunday's game, but visions of his altercation with the Reds' Brandon Phillips come to mind. If Nationals manager Jim Riggleman sits Morgan, things could calm down before they steam up, but there's always a chance of "roughhousing," considering the Redbirds have already proven they will not stand for low-class acts against their club.

The last time (Phillips) an opponent created a tiff against the Cardinals, the benches-clearing shoving match ensued. Cardinals' backup catcher Jason LaRue ended up taking several spiked-shoe kicks to the face and body, ending his season. Can the Cardinals afford to lose another teammate to "extra-curricular" activity?

Or can the Cards afford not to stand up for their teammate, Bryan Anderson?