The Cincinnati Reds-St. Louis Cardinals early-season rivalry took another turn with Jack Flaherty drilling Jonathan India in the head with a pitch.
It appears there was no intent behind Flaherty’s wild pitch. While both benches were warned, few players reacted and the end result was none other than Reds manager David Bell getting ejected. Because the umpires had already given a warning, Bell’s decision to rush out of his dugout and challenge authority was met with a swift hook.
This isn’t the only time the Reds and Cardinals have been involved in unnecessary on-field drama in 2021. Nicholas Castellanos was at the forefront of the rivalry early in the season, leading to a benches-clearing altercation with Yadier Molina also taking centerstage. Thankfully, none of that occurred over the weekend, with a return to normalcy between the two teams seemingly around the corner.
Did Jack Flaherty hit Jonathan India on purpose?
It’s rare for an opposing pitcher to throw directly at a hitter’s head. Should they wish to make a statement, the wiser choice is to aim for the back or thigh area as to avoid injury.
Not to mention, there was nothing in this series to suggest Flaherty to make an attack on the Reds for breaking some sort of unwritten rule, nor is he that kind of player to begin with. India was upset, and it’s easy to understand why, as he took a fastball to the top of his helmet. But, with cooler heads prevailing, it’s clear both Flaherty and India would prefer to continue the game, rather than provoking something much more controversial.