ST. LOUIS -- Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina has dropped the appeal of his one-game suspension and will serve it Wednesday night against Arizona.
Molina was issued the suspension and an undisclosed fine for making contact with second-base umpire Mike Everitt on Sunday. After catching 14 innings Tuesday night and with a important series with the Cincinnati Reds looming, Molina said it made sense to drop the appeal and serve the time.
"I knew Mike [Matheny] might give me a day off today, so why not drop it," Molina said. "I didn't want to. I believe I didn't do anything wrong.
"At the same time, I had to think about the team. If Mike was going to give me a day off today, it's a good idea to drop the appeal."
Molina was called out at first in the third inning of Sunday's loss to the Giants and slammed his helmet to the ground in frustration. As he turned toward the dugout, first-base umpire Clint Fagan immediately ejected Molina. He had to be restrained from Fagan and while struggling against his brother Bengie Molina, it appeared he may have made contact with Everitt, which prompted the suspension.
"You don't think on the field, you react," Molina said. "You don't have time to think and that's the way I reacted. I don't want to say I'm sorry I did it because that's the way I play. I didn't do anything wrong. If I do it again, that's the way I play. "
Manager Mike Matheny ran out onto the field in protest of the ejection and was also tossed from the game. He spoke critically of Fagan's decision to eject Molina and was also fined an undisclosed amount by the league. The ejection was the third of both Matheny and Molina's careers.
"I want to get this in the past. I'm trying to move on," Molina said. "That's why dropped the appeal today, because I want to get over with this and try to move on and get ready for Cincinnati."
Tony Cruz will start in place of Molina tonight and if necessary, infielder Ty Wigginton will fill in as the backup catcher, in which case Matheny said he might consider calling pitches himself. "Whenever you're a catcher down, usually it's a bigger deal than just giving a guy a day off," Matheny said."
Chad Thornburg is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less