SPRINGFIELD, Mo–As for Opening Day, well this is number 18 for Springfield.
But according to my calculations, the Cardinals don’t normally get off on the right foot because they’ve lost 14 of them.
However, since this is my first opening day with the boys, I was hoping a little beginners luck might go a long way.
As is tradition, the players are brought out one-by-one in a parade of pickup trucks.
Including second year Springfield Cardinal Chandler Redmond who dropped 31 pounds this offseason and looks like he could crush a baseball a country mile.
Teammate Michael McGreevy took center stage on the hill against Wichita but despite striking out a pair, the righty threw 34 pitches and gave up one run in the top of the first.
Not an ideal start.
Bottom of the frame, Mike Antico, rated fastest baserunner in the Cardinals system by Baseball America leads off with a standup double.
However, he’d stay put the rest of the inning.
Defensively, Springfield put on a clinic in a variety of ways, like this catch on a dead sprint by Justin Toerner to end the top of the third.
Or how about this put out by Matt Koperniak, Yoyner Fajardo tries to stretch this hit into a double and Koperniak hoses him by a mile to end the fourth.
Bottom of the fifth, the lowest man on the batting totem pole, Irving Lopez gives the offense a jolt with his first home run of the season to tie the game 1-1.
Top of the seventh, after pulling in front 2-1 the Wind Surge tack on a couple of insurance runs to blow this game wide open and sink the Cardinals to their 15th Opening Day loss as Wichita beats Springfield 4-1.
So for the fifth consecutive Opening Day the Cardinals suffer a loss.
However these two teams play again Friday, first pitch at 6:35 p.m.
We’ll see if Springfield can atone for the opener and earn their first win of the season.