Molina begins suspension

Friday, August 5, 2011

MIAMI -- St. Louis catcher Yadier Molina decided not to appeal a five-game suspension for bumping an umpire and spraying him with spittle, saying the punishment was fair.

Molina received the suspension Thursday and began serving it hours later when St. Louis opened a four-game series at Florida. The Cardinals are chasing the NL Central-leading Milwaukee Brewers and face them in a crucial three-game series beginning Tuesday.

Molina will return from his suspension Wednesday.

Molina also has a bruise on the palm of his right hand. The injury occurred when he blocked a pitch Wednesday, and he said it likely would have kept him out of two or three games anyway.

Molina said the spittle was unintentional but apologized for his tantrum. Along with the suspension, he was fined an undisclosed amount.

He became incensed after getting called out on strikes by plate umpire Rob Drake in the 10th inning Tuesday night in Milwaukee. After being ejected, Molina kept bumping his chest into Drake, and some spit flew into the umpire's face during the dispute.

"I'm sorry about it for our fans, the people in St. Louis and our organization," Molina said. "That's not me. I'm a good guy. I was caught up in the moment. "

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