(Busch Stadium) A couple of hours after posting on social media his disagreement with his manager’s characterization of him being tired, St. Louis Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina stood in front of his locker to discuss the situation.
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“I just want to let people know that I’m not tired,” began Molina. “I’m ready to play this game. That’s why I did it.”
The catcher and manager had not yet spoken today on the matter.
“I respect Mike, obviously we’re going to talk about it and try to figure it out,” said Molina, who continued to state that he was not tired and able to play.
“I train my whole career to be in this position–to play everyday and be a winner,” he said. “When you see Mike saying that you look tired, that’s an affront to me. That’s the way I took it. I’m ready to go.”
“I’ve always respected Mike since I met him in 2001-02,” said Molina. “He’s a great person. We’ve obviously had up and down situations, but I respect Mike a bunch.”
It was asked if any of this situation was based on the recent call-up of rookie catcher Carson Kelly.
“I don’t mind, obviously,” answered Yadi. “He’s a great kid. He’s a great catcher, a great talent. I’m going to be here to help him out anyway I can. But like I said, when you see in the paper that manager tells you that you look tired on the bases when you’re really not, that’s not good.”
Molina was then asked if posting his frustration in public would create a perception that things aren’t right on the team?
“Yeah, but I had to defend myself,” said Molina. “When you see a manager call you that way, that you look tired in the middle of the game running the bases, the people are going to think you are when you’re not. I had to defend myself.”
“Everybody’s reading about it and talking about it’s July 28th and Yadi’s tired? It makes you angry. It makes you mad. That’s why I put on Instagram what I said. I don’t regret it.”
He may not regret the comments, but Yadi does acknowledge that it does create some distraction.
“I hope not,” said Molina. “But I know how it is. I hope not. We’ve got something here, we’ve got a young team here. I don’t want to distract anything, but it will. I mean, it’s part of this. But I don’t want this to be a big thing–because, I mean, I love Mike. I always respect him. I’m going to try to do my best to win every time he puts me in the lineup, it’s not going to change my game away from me. I’m not tired. I’m ready to go. I’m not tired.”
As noted previously, Molina leads all of baseball with innings caught. He maintains that getting a day off was not the issue.
“It’s not tough when you do it one on one,” said Molina. “If you come to me like many times it’s happened. He’s come to me and said you probably need a day, I say yeah or yeah, no Mike I don’t need a day off I’m ready. But when I see the word in the paper and people read the paper and learn that I’m tired when I’m not, that’s another thing.”
The topic of Carson Kelly came up again, but Yadi stepped in to clarify any thought of a rift there.
“Let me clear up something, I’ve got no problem with Carson here,” reiterated Molina. “I’m going to help him out, the best way I can. My problem is what I saw in the paper today. Don’t start anything with Carson.”
photo credit: Charles LeClaire, Scott Rovak, Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports