Ill Gary Carter makes team's opener

Updated: February 3, 2012, 12:51 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

JUPITER, Fla. -- Even as he battles an aggressive form of brain cancer, Hall of Famer Gary Carter wouldn't miss Opening Day for the college baseball team he coaches.

Carter shook hands with each player on the Palm Beach Atlantic University team and watched about three innings of the game Thursday night from a private booth in the press box. The crowd gave him a standing ovation, The Palm Beach Post reported.

Carter's daughter Kimmy Bloemers said her father wanted to be there for his players. They responded with a 3-2 victory over Lynn University.

"He wanted to be here for his guys, here for Opening Day," said Bloemers, who coaches softball at the university, according to The Palm Beach Post. "He doesn't have a lot of energy but when it comes to baseball, he'll get that energy and that's what he has right now."

During the game, Carter's No. 8 Palm Beach Atlantic jersey hung on the dugout railing, the newspaper reported.

The 57-year-old Carter was joined at the game by fellow ex-major leaguers Tommy Hutton and Jeff Reardon, both of whom were among his teammates with the Montreal Expos.

Reardon said he visited Carter's house on Thursday to find out if he needed any help attending the game.

"I wasn't even sure if he was going to go but then he said, 'I'll be there tonight,' like he didn't need help," Reardon said, according The Palm Beach Post. "He talked about the team but not about what he's going through."

Carter was inducted in the Hall of Fame in 2003. He played 19 seasons, mostly with the Expos and New York Mets.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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