Cincinnati Reds’ Nick Castellanos loses appeal, will serve suspension

The Cincinnati Reds will be without one of the top hitters in their lineup against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday and Wednesday. 

Nick Castellanos will serve a two-game suspension after he lost his appeal Monday, a source confirmed. He was suspended for two games by Michael Hill, MLB's senior VP for on-field operations, for "aggressive actions and for instigating a benches-clearing incident" against the St. Louis Cardinals on April 3. 

Under the revised health and safety protocols, the agreement between the league and players' union says, "prohibitions against unsportsmanlike conduct will be strictly enforced to prevent unnecessary physical contact and support physical distancing between individuals on the playing field.

"(Players who) come within six feet of an umpire or opposing player or manager for the purpose of argument, or engage in altercations on the field are subject to immediate ejection and discipline, including fines and suspensions."

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Cincinnati Reds right fielder Nick Castellanos (2) exchanges words with St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Jake Woodford (40) after scoring in the fourth inning of the MLB baseball game between Cincinnati Reds and St. Louis Cardinals at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati on Saturday, April 3, 2021.

The benches-clearing incident stemmed from when Castellanos was hit by a pitch from Cardinals reliever Jake Woodford in the Reds' second game of the season. Castellanos thought it may have been intentional and was upset when he was hit with no runners on base and two outs in the fourth inning. 

Castellanos later scored in the inning on a wild pitch and Woodford fell onto Castellanos' back trying to apply a tag. Castellanos stood up after scoring and shouted, "Let's (expletive) go!" while staring at Woodford. Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina grabbed the back of Castellanos' neck as Castellanos began walking away, and the benches quickly cleared. 

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