Watch: Cardinals Pitcher Surprises Packed Stadium with Performance of 'Star-Spangled Banner'
St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright stunned fans and teammates Thursday when he belted out a beautiful rendition of the national anthem on Opening Day at Busch Stadium.
The 41-year-old was sidelined from the Cardinals’ season opener against the Toronto Bluejays — thanks to an injury sustained during a workout with Team USA during the World Baseball Classic championship game, CBS Sports reported.
But that did not stop him from contributing to the team and dazzling fans in his own way. Before the first pitch, the Georgia native grabbed a microphone and showed off his pipes.
Adam Wainwright just performed the National Anthem 🇺🇸🎶
Yes, you read that correctly.
(via @Sportsnet) pic.twitter.com/0ylI6sBMrR
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) March 30, 2023
His performance of “The Star-Spangled Banner” was beautiful and well-received by fans.
Adam Wainwright just… jumped out of the player line to sing the American national anthem.
What a moment in St. Louis history I’m witnessing. pic.twitter.com/tGGN2uRJMp
— Keegan Matheson (@KeeganMatheson) March 30, 2023
The three-time All-Star’s singing also earned him the adoration of many on social media:
#STLCards RHP and future country music crooner Adam Wainwright just killed it while singing the National Anthem. pic.twitter.com/13lYa0f7gq
— John Denton (@JohnDenton555) March 30, 2023
Adam Wainwright went from playing for Team USA to singing the National Anthem on Opening Day. My man more patriotic than Captain America himself. pic.twitter.com/kwsdqW2Ir9
— Jared Carrabis (@Jared_Carrabis) March 30, 2023
This is my absolute favorite thing I’ve ever seen. https://t.co/s6DhKxIJdQ
— erica. (@airwrecka128) March 30, 2023
This is fantastic. Well done, sir. https://t.co/01ipmdnjzj
— Ed Werder (@WerderEdESPN) March 30, 2023
— Anthony Trafficante (@AntTraff) March 30, 2023
This. Is. Awesome!!!!! https://t.co/qfaVVwFied
— Laura Hettiger (@LauraKHettiger) March 30, 2023
Throughout recent years, the country’s national anthem has all too often become a spectacle at sporting events. It all began after former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick first refused to stand for it during a 2016 preseason game.
“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” the player said after the game.
Kaepernick added, “To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”
Soon, protests of the anthem spread across the league and eventually into other sports.
But patriotism was alive and well in Missouri on Thursday as Wainwright embraced the country that has given him the opportunity to play many seasons of Major League Baseball.
In a world full of Kaepernicks, perhaps more athletes will choose to be like Wainwright.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.