Yesterday’s fracas led to both Dusty Baker and Tony La Russa being ejected in the bottom of the first inning. I don’t know about Baker, but Bernie Miklasz reports that La Russa didn’t take his ejection well:
Cardinals manager Tony La Russa didn’t necessarily enjoy
watching the contest from his office. He claimed that he vomited
four times because his stomach was churning so violently throughout
the nine innings.
It was, for a while at least, a competitive game, with the Reds coming back a couple of times, but there are more than a handful of games each month that are tighter and (fight aside) more drama-filled. The Cards played good baseball and, while it did get tight a couple of places, it felt like they were in control most of the game.
Which makes me wonder if La Russa’s upchucking was less a function of a tension-filled contest than it was a function of a man obsessed with being in control suddenly and unexpectedly being out of control.
For the sake of the man’s health, I hope he’s never fired or forced into retirement. It may kill him. He might barf up a lung and die on the spot.
Nationals starter Max Scherzer bunted a ball into his face during batting practice on Tuesday, breaking his nose in the process. He ended up with a gnarly looking shiner around his right eye, making him appear a bit like Terminator. Scherzer still took the ball to start the second game of Wednesday night’s doubleheader against the Phillies.
Despite the injury, Scherzer was incredibly effective, limiting the Phillies to four hits and two walks across seven shutout innings, striking out 10 batters in the process. He might even have had some extra adrenaline going, as he averaged 96.2 MPH on his fastball, his highest average fastball velocity in a game since September 2012, per MLB.com’s Jamal Collier. The Nationals provided Scherzer with just one run of support, coming on a Brian Dozier solo home run off of Jake Arrieta in the second inning, but it was enough.
Wander Suero worked a scoreless top of the eighth with a pair of strikeouts. Victor Robles added a solo homer off of Pat Neshek in the bottom half. Closer Sean Doolittle took over in the ninth, working a 1-2-3 frame to give the Nats their 2-0 victory.
Over his last six starts, Scherzer now has a 0.88 ERA with a 59/8 K/BB ratio across 41 innings. He has gone six innings, struck out at least nine batters, and held the opposition to two or fewer runs in each of those six starts.