Winning a division crown is hard enough when all 25 ballplayers on the roster are giving it their all. That task gets a lot tougher when the players on your own team are more concerned with fighting one another than with beating up on the opposition.
Shortly after the St. Louis Cardinals' all star catcher, Yadier Molina, was handed a five-game suspension for arguing and spraying spittle on umpire Rob Drake, reports came out that he apparently got into a fight with one of his own teammates.
According to several accounts, Molina and second-string catcher Gerald Laird had a run-in at the Cardinals' hotel in South Florida after the club's late arrival from Milwaukee on Wednesday night.
Craig Mish of Sirius/XM Fantasy Sports Radio broke the story, tweeted Thursday night that Laird called Molina a "cheater" and they had to be separated by teammates.
Tim McKernan of InsideStl.com reported that Cardinals GM John Mozeliak confirmed the altercation, acknowledging that there was "a disagreement" between the two.
According to Rick Hummel of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, no punches were thrown and Albert Pujols mediated the situation.
While it's not clear what exactly the disagreement was about, or why Laird may have accused Molina of cheating, there is no doubt that this doesn't bode well for the Red Birds. Having dropped two of three games to the surging Milwaukee Brewers, St. Louis is now three games back in the NL Central race.
UPDATE: Laird downplayed the incident, calling it "just a disagreement" and saying that he and Molina are friends.