Cardinals' Molina suspended for five games
Backstop apologizes, declines to appeal MLB's ruling
MIAMI -- Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina was suspended five games by Major League Baseball for his incident with umpire Rob Drake.
After discussing it with his agent and Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak, Molina has decided not to appeal the suspension.
"I am sorry for my actions and apologize for letting my emotions get the best of me," Molina said in a statement released by the Cardinals. "I want everyone to know that I would never intentionally spit on another person and that I have great respect for the umpires and the job they do. I accept full responsibility for my actions and will begin serving my suspension tonight."
Drake ejected Molina in the 10th inning of the Cardinals' 8-7 win over the Brewers on Tuesday night for arguing a called third strike. Replays showed that Molina bumped and possibly spit on Drake, but Molina has insisted that he did not intentionally spit at Drake.
"I would never do that to any man, any woman, to anybody," Molina said. "I respect the umpires. I respect the players. I respect everybody and I would not do that to anybody. Every time you yell and scream, something is going to come out, but on purpose, I would never do something like that."
Cardinals manager Tony La Russa knows Molina crossed the line when he bumped Drake, but he believes his catcher is usually very professional towards umpires.
"All of the things that umpires despise as far as being shown up, he doesn't do any of that," La Russa said. "He's very respectful."
Molina will miss the four-game series against the Marlins and next Tuesday's home game against the Brewers.
"I'm completely sorry about it," Molina said. "I apologize to all the fans and the whole St. Louis organization. That's not me. I'm a good guy and I'm not like that. I got caught up in the moment. That's what happens when you're in the race and trying to win. I didn't act the right way, but I'm trying to move on."
David Villavicencio is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.