Carpenter: Cards’ spring finale ‘felt like the most meaningless baseball game in the history of the sport’

Matt Carpenter says the Cardinals' Thursday matchup with the Marlins, which continued to its conclusion after MLB announced plans to cancel the rest of spring training and delay the regular season, "felt like the most meaningless baseball game in the history of the sport."
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Even before the first pitch, St. Louis Cardinals infielder Matt Carpenter could detect an odd vibe at Roger Dean Stadium.

“It felt like the most meaningless baseball game in the history of the sport,” he said.

Shortly before the Cardinals finished off the Miami Marlins 3-0 Thursday at Jupiter, Florida, the official word came: Major League Baseball had postponed opening day for at least two weeks and called off spring training exhibitions because of the virus outbreak.

“We pretty much were told that as soon as this game was over it was probably going to get suspended. You can imagine the amount of energy,” Carpenter said.

“More than likely the season’s pushed back and more than likely after this day the spring training games are canceled, so it’s like, what are we doing?” he said.

A handful of games were played in Florida while the slate of Arizona exhibitions was rained out. A night game between Baltimore and Minnesota in Fort Myers, Florida, was canceled after MLB’s announcement.

Tom Williams, from Venice, Florida, was among the crowd of 6,118 watching the Marlins-Cardinals game.

“When people were leaving, some of the season ticketholders, of which we are, they said we’ll see everyone next year,” he said. “So we thought this was probably the last game.”

The decision left most everyone in the sport in limbo.

“We’re all still figuring everything out,” Seattle pitcher Kendall Graveman said. “This is a first for everyone. Man, it’s invisible, too. So we’re really trying to take precautions. But yeah, it’s crazy.”