Arenado, Sosa homer as Cardinals finish spring with another tie

Nolan Arenado crosses home plate after hitting his first and only home run of spring training in the first inning.
Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

The St. Louis Cardinals, whose spring season began with a tie and ended with their sixth, didn’t hit much in their Grapefruit League finale, but Nolan Arenado did clear the fence for the first time as a Cardinal.

Arenado homered to left field in the first inning in his only plate appearance of the game, a 3-3 tie with the New York Mets in Jupiter, Florida. His was one of only two hits by Cardinals starters, the other a single by Tommy Edman, who went 1 for 2.

The rest of the St. Louis starting position players — Paul Goldschmidt, Paul DeJong, Tyler O’Neill, Yadier Molina, Dylan Carlson and Justin Williams — combined to go 0 for 10, bowing out for pinch hitters early on.

Another pinch hitter, batting for starter Adam Wainwright, was struggling veteran Matt Carpenter, who got just his second hit of spring, and his second RBI, with a line-drive single that tied the game 2-2 in the third.

The Cardinals who took over for the regulars fared little better at the plate. Edmundo Sosa had two hits, including a game-tying solo homer in the bottom of the ninth inning, but the rest of the lineup went hitless.

Wainwright had as close to a rough outing as he’s had in six spring starts. The Mets took a quick 2-0 lead on a single and two doubles among the first four batters. A two-out walk led to his removal for a reliever, but the 39-year-old right-hander came back via the spring pitcher re-entry rule to retire all six batters he faced in the second and third innings.

Carlos Martínez took over in the fourth and pitched three strong innings, allowing no runs or hits while striking out two batters. Andrew Miller and Giovanny Gallegos pitched a scoreless inning each.

The only Cardinals reliever who got scuffed was Ryan Helsley, who allowed consecutive two-out doubles in the eighth that gave New York a brief 3-2 edge.

The Cardinals finished their Grapefruit League schedule with an 8-10-6 record. They open the regular season at Cincinnati at 3 p.m. Thursday on Bally Sports Midwest.