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Greinke gives Cardinals additional motivation

On the eve of NLCS Game 1, Milwaukee starter Zack Greinke ripped St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Chris Carpenter.

The open days between MLB playoff games, called “Workout Days,” usually provide generic interview quotes from managers and the next game’s starting pitchers.

On Saturday, that changed. A most surprising source, Milwaukee’s Zack Greinke, sounded off about why his teammates do not like St. Louis Cardinals pitching ace Chris Carpenter.

Here are the relevant quotes.

Q. After being around it for 18 matchups this season, do these two teams legitimately dislike each other?

ZACK GREINKE: Maybe now. I think no one really likes Carpenter. But besides that, I think they respect mostly everyone on their team.

Q. So what do the guys have against Carpenter?

ZACK GREINKE: I don’t know. They think his presence, his attitude out there sometimes is like a phony attitude. But — and then he yells at people. He just stares people down and stuff. And most pitchers just don’t do that. And when guys do, I guess some hitters get mad. Some hitters do it to pitchers. But when you do that some people will get mad.

There’s other pitchers in the League that do it, but, I don’t know, a lot of guys on our team don’t like Carpenter.

Carpenter, the Cardinals’ NLDS Game 5 starter on Thursday, was not part of Saturday’s interview schedule. Manager Tony La Russa was, however, and he spoke after Greinke.

Q. Along those same lines, Zack Greinke came in a minute ago and he said that a lot of the Brewers’ guys don’t like Chris Carpenter in his eyes because “his attitude out there sometimes is like a phony attitude.” What’s your take on Carpenter and a comment like that?

TONY LaRUSSA: Very disappointed that Greinke would say that. Just praised him a little bit ago. I don’t know him a lot, but I always thought he was a high character, classy guy. That’s a bad comment to make unless you know Chris Carpenter.

Our attitude is we look at ourselves and we grade ourselves. And even if we don’t like what’s happening on the other side, we don’t make a it’s not our business, unless somebody crosses the line.

So I think the Brewers should take care of their players and their comments and not be concerned about other players and comments. But like I said at the beginning, I said it purposefully, if they had Chris Carpenter, they would be cheering for him and believing in him and they would not allow somebody that was a teammate to make a crack like that.

But Greinke is not his teammate, so I’m disappointed. If you knew him, none of that stuff is true. He doesn’t give bullshit. He doesn’t take it. That’s the way it’s supposed to be.

Will Greinke’s remarks provide additional motivation to a Cardinals team that surely does not like the Brewers, either?

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Brian Walton

Brian Walton runs The Cardinal Nation and The Cardinal Nation Blog, covering the St. Louis Cardinals and minor league system.
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58 Responses to “Greinke gives Cardinals additional motivation”

  1. crdswmn says:

    I think Greinke needs a blankie and a pacifier.

    • RCWarrior says:

      Heck Carp stares at his own players many times when they do something he doesn’t like, which is a joke. I like Greinke’s comments. He doesn’t like the guy, his teammates don’t like him either……and many teams do not. Big deal.

      I’ve said before that Carp is a big guy who acts tough but would most likely run from actual contact if a fight broke out. If Carp had mouthed at somebody like Farnsworth he would get his rear end handed to him. 🙂 I’m just not a big fan of a player running his mouth on the field like some wanna be tough guy. If you want to fight…fight, but stop with the mouth. Its a joke. You open your mouth to Farnsworth and he would attack you. Thats the way to do it.

      Carp is a warrior on the mound and complete stud…..but he is a prick. Nothing wrong with that so I don’t have a problem with a player calling him what he is. Greinke and Carp aren’t going to be sleeping together any time soon so who cares what one thinks of the other?

      The games are won and lost on the field with the bats, the gloves, and the ball….not the mouth. Nobody needs any motivation for a LCS but I’m sure there is no love lost between these teams…..and that is going to make this thing fun to watch. I like it when everybody hates everybody…….Let the fireworks begin. 🙂

      • crdswmn says:

        I don’t care whether Carp is a prick or not. There are plenty of them in MLB. He yells and stares at people, big whoop. If he is that upset about it, do something else for a living. Last time I checked, being liked was not a requirement for being a MLB player.

        • RCWarrior says:

          My point is what Greinke said is known throughout the ML’s. Carp is known as a big mouth guy who whines a lot. There is nothing new here. The guy asked Greinke what his team thought about Carp and he answered. Heck Carp just cussed one of the Brewers players a few weeks back after a strikeout and turned away after he said something. I’m a Carp fan but that is about as mickey mouse as one can get.

          Its the LaRussa mentality of the Cardinals always do things the right way thats irritates people I think. If Carp was on another team and yelled like he did a few weeks back at a Cardinals player we would have to listen to a 10 minute talk on class from Tony. Its a joke.

          Jaime gave up a jack last night and the next pitch hit Fielder. Where was Tony after the game with the you don’t throw inside on anybody speech? If that had been Albert we would have heard it and he would have sounded like he was on meth when he was speaking about it.

          Being liked has nothing to do with it. Just shut your mouth and play the game. It would sound so much better that way. 🙂

          • crdswmn says:

            Okay, If Carp is a well known prick (and I am not saying he is not) how is his attitude “phony”? That is what Greinke said. Furthermore, Greinke didn’t have to answer the question the way he did, he could have just mouthed some Bull Durham platitudes and said next question. That’s Talking to the Media 101. The media was obviously trying to whip stuff up for ratings, but Greinke didn’t have to go along with it. He either was too weak minded to dodge the question, or he intended to give up bulletin board material for whatever purpose. I wouldn’t give him an award in either case.

            I’ve wanted Carp to shut his mouth on many occasions. That doesn’t take away from the fact that many of these players who are so high and mighty are no better. They all whine about umpire calls. Carp is a prick but Nyjer Morgan is just colorful. Greinke was complaining that Cardinals players were yelling at him from the dugout. Did they call him a pussy like Nyjer Morgan did repeatedly to Carp from the dugout in a regular season game at Busch? Other managers engage in gamesmanship (Joaquin Benoit was made to take a bandaid off his face), but other teams act like LaRussa and the Cardinals invented this stuff. I don’t have a problem with disliking TLR for his antics or Carp for his mouth. I do have a problem with hypocrisy however.

          • crdswmn says:

            If Carp is a well known prick (and I am not saying he isn’t) then how is his attitude “phony”? That is what Greinke said. Greinke didn’t have to answer the question, he could have mouthed Bull Durham platitudes and said next question. That is Talking to the Media 101. Greinke was either too weak minded to dodge the question or he intended to give out bulletin board material for whatever purpose. I wouldn’t give him an award in either case.

            I’ve wanted Carp to shut his mouth on numerous occasions. I don’t like TLR’s gamesmanship. But these other high and mighty players are no better. They all whine about umpire calls. Carp is a prick but Nyjer Morgan is just colorful. Greinke complains that Cardinal players were yelling at him from the dugout. Did they call him a p*ssy, like Nyjer Morgan did to Carp from the dugout at Busch? Other managers engage in gamesmanship (Joaquin Benoit was made to take a Band Aid off his face). They all do this stuff but act like TLR and the Cardinals invented it. I don’t have a problem with disliking TLR for his antics or Carp for his mouth. I do have a problem with hypocrisy, however.

            • RCWarrior says:

              Carp is a phony tough guy. He acts all bad but is just bad when his lips are running or he has that stare working. Thats whats phony. In other words Carp really isn’t tough he just runs his mouth and then waits for his teammates to come rescue him. I like Carp but he is phony and Niger made an accurate characterization of Carps manliness imo. 🙂

              As for Greinke we all like it when the players speak the truth. Not managers but players. Greinke actually made references to his liking Carp, and respecting Carp if I read the article correctly. Then stated that a good number of the others didn’t like him. Again, I don’t believe anyone needed reminding that Carp did what he did earlier so it would be obvious to me that most Brewers don’t care for Carp and that both Cards fans and Brewers fans would also already know this.

              There are many managers who participate in different tactics in order to try and give their team an advantage…….this is part of the game imo. But to not give TLR the credit for being the absolute master of BS would not be genuine. TLR’s gamesmanship is one thing but listening to him speak about his way is always the right way makes me borderline sick. I have no problem hitting players if the need be but when they hit Albert don’t open your mouth, just hit you somebody else if you want to. His never ending need to bare his soul to the media is what makes me dislike him the most. TLR didn’t invent it but he sure believes he did. 🙂

              I actually like Niger just like I like Carp. Both are putting on a show, Carp is trying to act like a tough guy and Niger like a crazy man. I can respect both their skill sets as players while also recognizing their quirks.

              • Bw52 says:

                Nyger is a punk.A simple punk.Didn`t he cheap shot Bryan Anderson last year and he has been shipped out of Pittsburgh because of his ways.If Tonys ways bother someone you would think that someone wouldn`t listen or read what was said.Sounds simple enough.

                • RCWarrior says:

                  I can definitely agree with that characterization of Niger as well BW. And that most certainly was a cheap shot on Bryan Anderson last year.

                  You may be right but I just wish Tony would do his thing without the narration.

                • Brian Walton says:

                  Let’s face it. TLR is an emotional guy and as such, says things at times he wishes later he hadn’t. That isn’t going to change.

                  Morgan’s antics are tolerable when his team is winning. I think it is only a matter of time until he self-destructs, like a number of other “characters” in baseball in recent years. There is no genetic hardwire between athletic talent and self-control.

                  • RCWarrior says:

                    Again Brian I agree, and it is just continuing to beat a dead horse when I speak about it but it is a source of irritation for me.

                    Niger is a good player but is one that I wouldn’t want on my team as I would have to spend too much time managing his messes. But from afar I can appreciate his skills at playing the game of baseball while not really approving of his antics. I believe he fits in with the Brewers because they actually seem to try to make the game fun at the expense of looking professional.

                    I believe Braun said it best when he made the statement that both teams play the game hard but have different things that are important to them or something to that effect. The Cardinals take a more businesslike approach while the Brewers are like kids at the playground. Both styles work for the individual teams.

                    • JumboShrimp says:

                      A lot of this blah blah boils down to the vague word, fun.
                      This may be a matter of discipline. Some teams like to play hard and not get pointers from coaches about how to play. TLR’s team is more micro-managed in terms of fielding positions, pitch calling, signs, etc. Players are expected to pay attention to what the coaches want them do.

                      Do I care if ball players are having enough “fun”? This does not one of my top 10 million concerns in life.

                    • RCWarrior says:

                      But I believe you can be flexible in your thoughts enough Jumbo to agree that some players would do better in a TLR type of environment while others may prosper in something a little different?

                      The old square peg in a round hole argument.

                      A great case in point is Colby had little instruction back in 2009 as far as OF positioning and OF depth. He was really good. These last two years he was positioned by Tony and reallly struggled. Upon moving to Toronto he was put back in charge of his positioning and was really good defensively after the trade. I had begun to think he was just a shitty OF. Now I have hope that he wasn’t as bad as I was beginning to think he was. Now hitting is quite another matter. 🙂

                  • CariocaCardinal says:

                    I’ve never understood giving anyone a pass for disengaging their brain because they are an emotional person.

              • crdswmn says:

                I won’t argue against anything you have said about TLR, my dislike of him is well known. You have had negative personal experiences with him though and I would argue that your objectivity is a bit clouded. 🙂 Perhaps the same behavior by someone you don’t know would be perceived a bit differently or at least a little more dispassionately? 🙂

                I see no equivalency between Carp and and Morgan. Carp’s “phony tough guy” act as you put it is not likely to get anyone hurt. I can’t say the same thing for Morgan.

                • RCWarrior says:

                  You may be right Crdswmn. Or maybe I’ve just witnessed TLR first hand these last 3 years and I’ve noticed him more because the Cards are who I have been keeping up with. This type of stuff may very well go on in many other places but I just don’t see as much of it.

                  But you are right, TLR the manager I have great respect for, the man…..none.

                  And the Carp thing just makes me mad. He is such a complete stud on the mound I hate to see him do those things that reflect negatively on him. Coming from where I grew up and having spent more than a few nights in the paddy wagon for beating people senslessly I have always preferred the man who spoke with his actions not words. Never been a fan of saying I’m gonna kick your butt. I would rather just do it and talk afterwards.

                  • crdswmn says:

                    Well I have to wonder if Carp not decking someone has more to do with not wanting to injure his pitching hand. If that appendage were my means of making a living I would be leery of banging it up myself. He does have a hockey background as does Morgan so you have to believe there has been fighting in his past at some point. 🙂

                    • RCWarrior says:

                      Morgan will fight. He’s a crazy man. Carp may have played hockey but I’m betting you he has never seen a fist fight.

                      Check out the last one on this list. When Niger opened his mouth this is what should have happened.


                    • crdswmn says:

                      Nyjer isn’t a pitcher. Clearly he will fight since he has done it, but he sure got his clock cleaned by Gaby Sanchez. Probably doesn’t want to mess with him anymore. 🙂

                      As for Carp never seeing a fist fight, I don’t think either one of us can speak to that.

                    • RCWarrior says:

                      I’ll give you that, but will you acknowledge that the Georgia boy is definitely not afraid of putting his hands on anyone? 🙂

                    • RCWarrior says:

                      By the way Marilyn, I really enjoyed the blog post on redbird rants. Funny stuff. Excellently done.

                    • crdswmn says:

                      I assume you mean Farnsworth since I know Morgan is not a Georgia boy. I have not known many southern boys who are afraid to fight. 🙂

                      Thanks about the blog post.

            • Brian Walton says:

              In talking to him and watching him, I have sensed a change in Carp in the last couple of years. It is as if he decided to put up an additional barrier and develop a tougher exterior demeanor. I don’t know how that is any more fake than countless players who honed a motivational technique that worked for them. Carp is in the latter stages of a great career and who can blame him if he wants to do whatever he thinks is necessary to maintain his edge as long as possible?

              One tangentially-related aspect which I find refreshing is that Carp does not fraternize with the opponent. If I am serious about destroying the other guys, they surely aren’t my pals, and especially so, not during the game. I am really, really turned off by the friendly banter and chit-chat on the bases. Save it for the off-season.

              • RCWarrior says:

                Brian, I agree with you here…..on both counts.

                I would actually love it for Carp to go off on somebody one day ala Farnsworth….then I would be able to back him 100%. But you may very well be right about him doing what he has to do to get an edge.

                I also dislike showing your opponent a lot of love during the game. I wish every player would not even speak to the opposing team during the game. After the game, hang out and have a few beers together, but during the game it needs to be a total hatred for one another.

                • Brian Walton says:

                  There is a good reason why some of the game’s toughest competitors, take Bob Gibson for example, do not and probably cannot coach today.

                  I am watching Kirk Gibson closely in Arizona. Fortunately, he has a young club, but it will be interesting to see if he can deal with today’s players over the long haul.

          • crdswmn says:

            Also, Garcia was obviously struggling with his control most of the game and you think Garcia intentionally threw at Fielder? I don’t believe for a second that Motte didn’t intentionally try to hit Braun in that game where Albert was hit, but that pitch at Fielder was just Jaime being his sometimes “I’m spooked and I don’t know where my next pitch is going” self.

            • RCWarrior says:

              I am about as sure Garcia hit Fielder on purpose as I was that Carp said something to Niger when he initially denied it. I’m sure Tony was trying to toughen Jaime up by having him do that. But it wasn’t an accident. I’ve seen that way to much to think it just slipped. Jaime’s control appeared to be pretty good early on imo.

              Here again, I don’t think hitting the guy is wrong. If you are playing old school baseball rules, which TLR claims to be playing, then thats the way you do it. I expect Albert to get hit before this thing is all said and done because Fielder was hit last night. Its the only way to control Tony imo.

      • blingboy says:

        I’ve seen the Cincy-Cueto tape countless times and Carp could not be described as running, or even hanging back.

        On the other hand, he only seems to stare down or tunnel talk a young guy who is not in a position to defend himself dealing with an established big star who is a fav of the manager.

        At least he stood tall and came through in the clutch when the team needed it. Unlike Albert last night. It’s an odd coincidence that early in the season they both sucked, then came charging down the stretch

        I would bet a million that Chris’s was not a shoulder Colby could lean on.

  2. Nutlaw says:

    Should be a heated series, no doubt!

  3. JumboShrimp says:

    Greinke has some similarities to Ankiel. Both were phenom pitchers from the Orlando FL area. After a year or two in the majors, Greinke suffered a mentalproblem, because of all the pressure heaped on him being the ace of a crummy team. The Royals gave their little princeling a year off to work on his coconut.
    Greinke has very good control of multiple pitches, making him effective.
    He should just play the game, keep his mouth shut, and not confide oddball thoughts.

  4. ball in play says:

    nlcs roster announced yet?

  5. Brian Walton says:

    1. Rafael Furcal (S) SS
    2. Jon Jay (L) CF
    3. Albert Pujols (R) 1B
    4. Lance Berkman (S) RF
    5. Matt Holliday (R) LF
    6. Yadier Molina (R) C
    7. David Freese (R) 3B
    8. Ryan Theriot (R) 2B
    9. Jaime Garcia (L) P

  6. blingboy says:

    Couple things before I head out.

    There has to be a record for most Cy Youngs faced in least time.

    The central is the weakling of the NL.

    Any guesses why Yadi is 6 and Freese 7

  7. JumboShrimp says:

    TLR needs to use a quick hook on Garcia. He gave up a 3 run homer to Philly in the 7th and a 2 run shot today in the first. Garcia will give up long balls to right swingers.

  8. JumboShrimp says:

    In the time I took to type the comment at 4:51, the Brewers just scored 4 runs. Doggone it.

  9. RCWarrior says:

    I expect this series to be a war. Both sides hate each other and that makes for good theatre. I like the Cards to win it but the Brewers will be able to hit a good bit better than the Philles imo.

  10. RCWarrior says:

    I expect Edwin to dominate tonight and the cards should put up 8-10 runs is my guess. Can you say blowout?

    • WestCoastbirdWatcher says:

      Mil -135 8.5 ………………………. easy money then???…………. if Molina is batting 6th…..if Punto isn’t at 2nd…….or Jackson puts his own blood in the water early……. especially with Nyger doing the knife work…..we lose………………. Brewers came in yesterday ready to lie down………. but we have a suddenly contented AP………..whose needs…..Tony has reassured………will be met…… Marcum sucks against good hitting………..that leaves us out…………. will Tony grasp at recent precedent? Or will you see a stumbling “Tony surprise” lineup tonight???????

    • blingboy says:

      I expect Ed to dominate innings 2 through 5.

  11. blingboy says:

    I’m in favor of sending Milwaukee back to the American League, right now.

    The last two games we got zero from our boppers. We could use an offensive ejaculation of biblical proportions.

    Hockey has the Lady Byng trophy for most gentlemanly player. What is the baseball equivalent?

  12. blingboy says:

    Does anyone know if a pitched ball bounces first, then hits the batter, is it a HBP?

    • WestCoastbirdWatcher says:

      Yes it is a HB………………….heres and interesting comment I read from the Gould article……….

      Derrick, even though Albert has struggled through these playoffs, many of us could at least applaud him for being situationally “sensitive” and a positive defensive influence.
      His emotional demeanor changed noticeably though after the Phillies celebration. Yesterdays dispassionate display, reminiscent of his play all season long, isn’t an accident at all is it? He is being reminded of his own self interests, which again run counterproductive to team interests often enough, and this shows in his play. I must admit that seeing the attack on the Westbrook and Lohse contracts begin again, reminds me, who is reminding Albert, of his interests. And on up the food chain it goes. Maybe the real reason Tony was reluctant to pull Garcia soon enough? Further exacerbating “his decision” to set the rotation so “carelessly”? So purposefully? I’m glad you thought to write this piece. It points in the right direction.

      Read more:

    • RCWarrior says:

      Yes. Did you know that way way back you could bounce a ball into the strike zone and it be a strike?

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