[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]I am curious: When was the last time you saw the benches clear following an inside pitch?

Maybe I don’t pay close attention, but I can’t recall ever witnessing what happened in the home half of the eighth inning of the New York Mets/St. Louis on Wednesday.

On the first pitch of the bottom of the eighth, Mets reliever Yoan Lopez fired a fastball inside that straightened up Nolan Arenado, and the Cardinals third baseman erupted, and the benches emptied.

In the postgame press conference, Cardinals manager Oli Marmol offered an interesting perspective: “When you come up top like that and jeopardize someone’s career and life. I take exception to that. I don’t think anyone in the big leagues appreciates getting thrown up top. Nolan has every right to react the way he did and go after him.”

Buck Showalter protects his players and Marmol was attempting to safeguard Arenado. I get it, but Arenado’s reaction was, as crew chief Mark Wegner excessive.

If Arenado had been hit by the pitch, his reaction would have been justified. His anger would be warranted, but Arenado was not hit by the pitch – unlike Pete Alonso, and a handful of other New York Mets.

Despite winning the series, the Mets return home beaten and bruised. Over the course of the three games in St. Louis, Mets hitters were hit by pitches five times.

The most frightening came on Tuesday when Pete Alonso was hit in the head. It makes fans wince and Alonso shrug — the first time, anyway. “Just a busted lip, that’s it,” he said after being hit in the head earlier this season. “Got all my teeth, no concussion, I’m all good.”

On Tuesday, Alonso appeared a bit more agitated.

“Getting domed up isn’t fun,” said Alonso. “It’s obviously not safe, it’s dangerous and there are consequences whether it’s on purpose or not, and we’re going to stand up for ourselves. What happened today just didn’t make sense; the whole thing didn’t make sense.”

All this points us to May 16. That is the week the St. Louis Cardinals visit Citi Field. The two teams will have a three-week buffer to cool down, but in sports, no one forgets the past. The ingredients for an interesting and intriguing rivalry have been renewed.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_column_text]

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John Strubel

Hi. My name is John Strubel. Thanks for visiting my website. I write primarily about my passion: baseball. In addition, I occasionally publish posts and podcasts related to sports media, journalism and technology impacting the industry. You can also connect with me on social media @johnstrubel.

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