Benches clear between Cardinals and Nats

JUPITER, FL (AP & KFVS) - Tony La Russa and Jim Riggleman had to be

separated when both benches cleared Monday during a testy spring

training game between the Washington Nationals and St. Louis


The scuffle broke out after three batters were hit by pitches,

but no punches were thrown and St. Louis reliever Miguel Batista

was the only player ejected. The Nationals went on to a 7-2


With his team trailing 4-2 in the seventh inning, Batista

plunked Ian Desmond in the back. While making his way to first,

Desmond jawed with Cardinals catcher Tony Cruz, who was walking

behind him. Upon reaching first base, Desmond turned to the mound

and yelled at Batista.

Players from both teams poured onto the field, gathering around

first base in front of the St. Louis dugout. La Russa, the

Cardinals' 66-year-old manager, and Riggleman, his counterpart, had

to be separated during the fray.

Meanwhile, the Cardinals have trimmed ten more players from their spring training roster. The latest cuts include Matt Carpenter, who has been one of the team's top hitters. The Cardinals reassigned Carpenter to Class AAA Memphis, where he will be the starting 3rd baseman.

The latest cuts leave only Tyler Green and Daniel Descalso as the only two utility infielders in camp.  There are two spots open for utility infielders on the big league roster.

With Monday's win the Cardinals are now 12 and 11 in Grapefruit League play.

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