When the Cardinals took the field in the bottom of the first inning of Monday's 7-3 win over the Reds, Chris Carpenter took his warmups, finished, then stared toward the left side of the diamond and waited.
Shortstop Brendan Ryan hadn't taken his position yet, and Carpenter was ready to pitch. Worse yet, when Ryan finally made it to his position, he didn't have the right glove, so another pause was required so he could get the proper equipment.
It didn't sit well with the famously fiery Carpenter, who stared darts at Ryan's spot as he waited. The two retreated into the dugout tunnel after the inning ended, where Carpenter made it clear that he was none too pleased with the misstep.
"[Ryan had been] in the cage swinging," manager Tony La Russa explained. "All of a sudden, we made three quick outs in the first inning, then he scrambled out there, and he forgot where his glove was. So Carp said, 'Hey, what's going on?'
"I think that's what you're supposed to do. You're supposed to let guys know, first inning, I don't want to be out there waiting. He's ready to pitch in the top of the first and the guy's not there."
Carpenter put it much more diplomatically when he addressed reporters after the game.
"It was just a little miscommunication on my part or misunderstanding on my part," he said. "We're fine. Everything is good. We're good."
Ryan, normally among the most gregarious and quotable Cardinals, left the clubhouse without talking to reporters.
Carpenter experienced another bout of annoyance in the seventh inning, and though it may have appeared that the target was again Ryan, the hurler said that instead he was displeased with himself. A two-run Reds rally put a frown on Carpenter's face, not the fact that one of the balls was a single through the shortstop hole on the left side.
"I didn't want to give up any runs," Carpenter said. "I was throwing the ball well and my pitch count was low, and I just wanted to keep going. And unfortunately, I found a way to get my pitch count up and get myself out of the game."
Matthew Leach is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less