JUPITER, Fla. — After Jordan Montgomery threw five scoreless innings on Wednesday he expressed confidence that he is ready to begin the regular season.
There is one thing, however, that Montgomery had hoped would happen this spring that apparently won’t, with just a few days left before the team packs up and heads to St. Louis.
Montgomery is eligible to be a free agent at the end of this year and he would have liked to have heard from the Cardinals about possibly talking about a contract extension.
“We’ve had all spring,” Montgomery said. “I said at the very beginning I had ears open. No one’s talked.
“If they get to talking they can, but I’m just ready to try to win games and make my 32 starts. It’s something you can’t think about. I’m here, I want to win games for the Cardinals.”
He said he is not interested in talking about his contract once the regular season begins.
“If it doesn’t get done in spring I’m just going to start focusing on games,” Montgomery said.
Montgomery is one of three of the Cardinals’ projected five starters who is eligible for free agency after the season, along with Jack Flaherty and Miles Mikolas. Adam Wainwright will be retiring, leaving only Steven Matz signed for 2024.
Here is how Wednesday’s game broke down:
High: Five pitchers combined to shut out the Marlins, scattering seven hits.
Low: The Cardinals had just five hits as they played to a 0-0 tie for the first time (in a nine-inning game) since the final day of spring training in 2015.
At the plate: Alec Burleson had two of the five hits, one of which was a double … The Cardinals were 0-of-9 with runners in scoring position … Jordan Walker was hitless in four at-bats for the second game in a row, striking out twice. “He’s human,” said manager Oli Marmol … Andrew Knizner also was 0-of-4 but Marmol said it was a deceiving number. “It’s the best we’ve seem him,” Marmol said. “Hopefully he can build on that.” … Tyler O’Neill was back in the lineup for the first time since the WBC and was 0-of-2 with a walk.
On the mound: Montgomery allowed six hits, did not walk a batter and had one strikeout. Twelve of his 15 outs came on groundballs … Ryan Helsley, Jordan Hicks, Andre Pallante and Drew VerHagen completed the shutout by each pitching one inning. The only Marlins hit in those four innings was a single off Hicks.
Worth noting: Nolan Gorman played second base and made an outstanding play in turning a double play. “I really do feel like we’re seeing a different player,” Marmol said. “There’s a confident, relaxed type of aura to him and I’m loving watching it right now.” … Brendan Donovan made his second start at shortstop …. Adam Wainwright and Miles Mikolas checked back into camp after the WBC, with the rest of the Cardinals – Paul Goldschmidt, Nolan Arenado and Lars Nootbaar expected back on Thursday.
Up next: Matz will get the start on Thursday when the Cardinals host the Yankees in Jupiter.
Follow Rob Rains on Twitter @RobRains
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