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Friday, September 14, 2018

David Wright to suit up for Mets one last time

Fighting back tears at an emotional news conference Thursday, Wright announced he will return from a 2 1/2-year absence to start at third base on Sept. 29. He does not expect to play again after this month.

I bet he’ll get a pretty good ovation, and he deserves it.

Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: September 14, 2018 at 07:47 AM | 42 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: david wright, general, mets, new york, new york mets, retirements

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   1. Tom T Posted: September 14, 2018 at 08:55 AM (#5744194)
I imagine that in some alternate university he managed to be healthy enough to continue to play about like 2014 (2.8 WAR; 101 OPS+) until now, and wraps up his career nosing over the line for meaningful HOF consideration (having hit a few nice milestones like 2000 hits, 1000 RBI, 250 HR; still having a pretty bauble of a .285 AVG). Damn shame.
   2. BDC Posted: September 14, 2018 at 09:28 AM (#5744212)
I posted this in a Chatter yesterday but will repost with some addition. The two closest careers to Wright by OPS+ and PA are both HOF corner infielders, one a Yankee for quite a while and the other a Giant. I also include some lesser fielders who had similar offensive impact:

Player            dWAR   PA OPSRbaser  HR  RBI   BA  OBP  SLG       Pos
Home Run Baker     9.7 6667  135   
-5.1  96  991 .307 .363 .442      *5/H
David Wright       1.6 6869  133   14.0 242  970 .296 .376 .491    
*5/HD6
Bill Terry        
-0.3 7108  136   -3.4 154 1078 .341 .393 .506    *3H/97
Tony Oliva        
-4.4 6880  131    5.4 220  947 .304 .353 .476   *9DH/87
Ryan Braun        
-7.5 6645  136   22.8 317 1041 .299 .361 .534 *795/HD38
Juan Gonzalez    
-11.6 7155  132    4.5 434 1404 .295 .343 .561    9D78/H
Prince Fielder   
-20.7 6853  134  -37.4 319 1028 .283 .382 .506     *3D/


Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 9/14/2018.

I lived in New York in Wright's heyday, and used to walk from Penn Station to the Public Library to study. There were vendors on 32nd Street who would sell all manner of African- and African-American-themed stuff, videos, attire, souvenirs. Lots of pictures of black sport stars: and alongside them, pictures of David Wright.
   3. Nasty Nate Posted: September 14, 2018 at 09:42 AM (#5744223)
The article mentions the possibility that the starting SS could be Jose Reyes, who may also be at the end of his MLB career.
   4. Hysterical & Useless Posted: September 14, 2018 at 09:48 AM (#5744231)
At his best, one of the top players in the NL. Probably the only other Mets-developed position player even close to him in talent would be Darryl (who put up almost all of the value of his 17 year career in his 8 seasons with the Mets; another "shoulda been").

Very sorry he never got the WS win that looked so likely back in the mid-aughts...

ETA: referring of course to DW, not Jose. Nate posted while I was ever-so-slowly typing my very short post
   5. Sweatpants Posted: September 14, 2018 at 10:01 AM (#5744241)
Wright generally annoyed me and I never rooted for him. It wasn't his fault. I hated the forced Captain America nickname and didn't think that he deserved either of his Gold Gloves or Silver Sluggers (Silver Sluggers, what a petty thing to get annoyed about). The whole thing felt like baseball getting caught up in the hype of the Mets becoming a prominent team and thus trying to present Wright as the Mets' Derek Jeter. Then, when the fences got moved in at CitiField, it felt almost like a direct reaction to Wright's struggles, as if it just wouldn't be fair if David Wright couldn't have optimal conditions in his home park. Most of these were visceral reactions on my part rather than an actual reflection of what was actually happening at the time, though, and they say more about me than they do about Wright's career trajectory.

Anyway, no matter what I thought as a grumpy little fan, it's still sad to see a shot at the HOF slip away a little bit each year, through no real fault of the player, until finally he has to concede that it isn't going to happen. I will say this - I mentioned how I felt about the Gold Gloves and Silver Sluggers earlier, but I think I always knew deep down that he deserved the 2007 MVP. He played very well in September, even as everything around him was falling down. The same was true in September 2008.
   6. sotapop Posted: September 14, 2018 at 10:03 AM (#5744244)
For several years I lived near where David Wright grew up and there were always stories about what a truly good guy he is.

Rob Never told one last night on Twitter:

"This triggered a memory of something I'd completely forgotten: After I wrote a run-of-the-mill David Wright is a great player column, years and years ago, he tracked down my phone number and left a message of gratitude on answering machine. First and only time anyone's done that."

That was in response to an even better story in another writer's tweet. Click through for it.
   7. Swoboda is freedom Posted: September 14, 2018 at 10:06 AM (#5744251)
The article mentions the possibility that the starting SS could be Jose Reyes, who may also be at the end of his MLB career.

Mets fans are hoping so.
   8. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: September 14, 2018 at 10:23 AM (#5744265)
Met fan on Twitter yesterday:

"We wanted him to be our Jeter. He was our Mattingly, instead, which still ain't bad."
   9. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: September 14, 2018 at 10:26 AM (#5744269)
Then, when the fences got moved in at CitiField, it felt almost like a direct reaction to Wright's struggles, as if it just wouldn't be fair if David Wright couldn't have optimal conditions in his home park.


I've always said Citi Field was built with 2 players in mind -- Reyes and Carlos Beltran -- to the detriment of Wright. As it turned out, both Reyes and Beltran would be gone before Citi Field was 3 years old.
   10. Adam Starblind Posted: September 14, 2018 at 10:34 AM (#5744278)
Then, when the fences got moved in at CitiField, it felt almost like a direct reaction to Wright's struggles, as if it just wouldn't be fair if David Wright couldn't have optimal conditions in his home park.


It was more than that. Wright had great power to right center. Shea was a perfectly normal 371 feet to right center, not particularly optimal. The Mets then built the new stadium with the wall in right center 415 feet away and sixteen feet tall!!!! It was as if they designed a distorted new park specifically to severely hinder their best player. He had to change his swing, and right center was never his power alley again. Perhaps not coincidentally he strugged for a few years after that. It was insane!!
   11. John DiFool2 Posted: September 14, 2018 at 10:41 AM (#5744286)
[w/ a beverage for #9 only now noticed]

I'll just note the relative lack of taps being played for his teammate Jose Reyes, who thru age 25 looked like he had a reasonable shot at the Hall as well, but like Wright has been pretty hopeless for several years now.
   12. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: September 14, 2018 at 10:46 AM (#5744293)
I'll just note the relative lack of taps being played for his teammate Jose Reyes, who thru age 25 looked like he had a reasonable shot at the Hall as well, but like Wright has been pretty hopeless for several years now.


Yeah, having domestic violence on your record will tend to do that.
   13. Greg Pope Posted: September 14, 2018 at 10:53 AM (#5744302)
Perhaps not coincidentally he strugged for a few years after that. It was insane!!


Insane would be tailoring a park for a specific hitter. The park is going to be there for another 50+ years (this isn't Atlanta) and Wright was going to be there for, what 10 more at the most?
   14. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 14, 2018 at 10:56 AM (#5744306)
The two closest careers to Wright by OPS+ and PA are both HOF corner infielders, one a Yankee for quite a while

It's funny that no one thinks of Baker as a Yankee. I mean he put up 2/3 of his value for the A's, but he still had 6 seasons and 20 WAR for the Yankees. You'd think the team and fans would have more memory of a HoFer who played for the team that long.

I mean, people are generally aware of the much less notable Yankee careers of guys like Johnny Mize, Johnny Sain, and Enos Slaughter. I guess in popular memory Yankee history doesn't really start until Ruth.
   15. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: September 14, 2018 at 10:57 AM (#5744310)
Insane would be tailoring a park for a specific hitter.


Worked pretty well for Yankee Stadium I.
   16. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 14, 2018 at 10:58 AM (#5744312)
Insane would be tailoring a park for a specific hitter. The park is going to be there for another 50+ years (this isn't Atlanta) and Wright was going to be there for, what 10 more at the most?

Not necessarily, especially if that hitter is of a type that you can consistently target.

The Yankees did pretty well for 50+ years with a Stadium designed around Babe Ruth.

Edit: coke to Charlie
   17. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: September 14, 2018 at 10:59 AM (#5744316)
coke to Charlie


In the words of legendary manager Jimmy Dugan, "Aaaaaaaaaah!"
   18. SoSH U at work Posted: September 14, 2018 at 11:27 AM (#5744348)
Not necessarily, especially if that hitter is of a type that you can consistently target.


Or, you can tailor your park to benefit a non-specific but still-important group - pitchers. That makes the most sense.
   19. Adam Starblind Posted: September 14, 2018 at 11:49 AM (#5744362)
Insane would be tailoring a park for a specific hitter.


I don't disagree with the general proposition, but this particular feature (415 to right center, 16 feet high) was bizarre in its own right. Somebody along the way could have said "wait, is there a reason why we're doing this?"
   20. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: September 14, 2018 at 12:04 PM (#5744369)
...but this particular feature (415 to right center, 16 feet high) was bizarre in its own right. Somebody along the way could have said "wait, is there a reason why we're doing this?"


To generate triples for Jose Reyes, THE Most Exciting Player in Baseball!
   21. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: September 14, 2018 at 12:08 PM (#5744377)
...but this particular feature (415 to right center, 16 feet high) was bizarre in its own right. Somebody along the way could have said "wait, is there a reason why we're doing this?"

In this launch angle era, I'd love it if there were more quirks and spacious outfields like this.
   22. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 14, 2018 at 12:08 PM (#5744378)

Or, you can tailor your park to benefit a non-specific but still-important group - pitchers. That makes the most sense.


You can do both. Old Yankee Stadium was generally a pitchers' park, but had that short porch that benefited a specific sub-set of LHB, which the Yankees then sought to acquire.

I like extreme variation in parks. I wish Yankee Stadium were still 460' to LCF, or even the 435' of the first renovation.
   23. Swoboda is freedom Posted: September 14, 2018 at 12:45 PM (#5744403)
I like extreme variation in parks. I wish Yankee Stadium were still 460' to LCF, or even the 435' of the first renovation.

I don't mind variation, and I wish most of the parks had deeper fences, but I hate the quirky things they would do as a throwback or just to be different. The old mound they had in Houston for example, or cut outs in the field. The old parks had this because of space limitations, the Green Monster for example, not to be different.
   24. BDC Posted: September 14, 2018 at 01:04 PM (#5744416)
Insane would be tailoring a park for a specific hitter


Speaking of Juan Gonzalez, the Rangers did something almost the opposite when they moved into their current park in 1994. Gonzalez was coming off two straight home-run titles, but the new park featured a "home-run porch" in right field, and Gonzalez liked to pull the ball to left. Not only was the left-field fence a bit further out in the Ballpark, but the wind patterns made it hard to hit home runs to left. In 1994, Gonzalez' home-field HR% dropped from 8.1 to 2.3. (On the road it dropped from 7.6 to 6.3).

You could see Gonzalez visibly struggling with the situation. I wondered what genius designed a park to hurt its best young slugger – although it was probably designed before Gonzalez became a HR champ, thinking about it now. Oddly enough, in the long run it made Gonzalez a better hitter. He started going with the pitch more, but could still drive it. His batting average went up (he hit .284 career in the old ballpark, .314 in the new one). They also made some adjustments to the park that reduced the wind effects. Gonzalez never led the league in HR again, but he led in doubles in 1998, and of course won two MVP awards.
   25. manchestermets Posted: September 14, 2018 at 01:47 PM (#5744451)
Or, you can tailor your park to benefit a non-specific but still-important group - pitchers. That makes the most sense.


Both teams have pitchers though. Both teams (as a rule) won't have the type of hitter you've tailored your park to, and then signed.
   26. Karl from NY Posted: September 14, 2018 at 02:16 PM (#5744471)
Then, when the fences got moved in at CitiField, it felt almost like a direct reaction to Wright's struggles

I thought this actually did happen directly, as in the team did it at Wright's request.
   27. SoSH U at work Posted: September 14, 2018 at 02:30 PM (#5744480)
Both teams have pitchers though. Both teams (as a rule) won't have the type of hitter you've tailored your park to, and then signed.


Pitchers get hurt. Pitchers get hurt by throwing pitches. The fewer pitchers you make your pitchers throw, the better off you are, since you get 81 games there, and your individual opponents only get 6-9.

   28. Greg Pope Posted: September 14, 2018 at 02:55 PM (#5744501)
The fewer pitchers you make your pitchers throw, the better off you are, since you get 81 games there, and your individual opponents only get 6-9.

Right. The opposite of the Coors effect. If you play a 12-game homestand in Colorado, your pitchers are gassed by the end. But each opponent only blew out their guys for 3 games, which can be covered for.
   29. Karl from NY Posted: September 14, 2018 at 03:49 PM (#5744555)
But if you make your park pitcher-friendly, then the effect you get is that hitters won't want to come play for your team.
   30. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: September 14, 2018 at 03:55 PM (#5744563)
David Wright deserved a lot better. I remember getting into fights here with chuckleheads who thought Pablo Sandoval was obviously better.
   31. This is going to be state of the art wall Posted: September 14, 2018 at 04:23 PM (#5744581)
At this point you just hope the guy can pickup his grandkids and hug them in 20 years without pain. Give him a lot of credit for hanging on as long as he did. Seems he could have given it up half a decade ago. He was such a big star when I was living in NYC, but time makes fools of us all.
   32. Adam Starblind Posted: September 14, 2018 at 05:03 PM (#5744603)



David Wright deserved a lot better. I remember getting into fights here with chuckleheads who thought Pablo Sandoval was obviously better.


Not to mention Andrew Marte.
   33. Adam Starblind Posted: September 15, 2018 at 09:39 AM (#5744790)
Oh, and how much you wanna bet this has no impact on the team's off-season spending?

Previously they've explained that they don't save all that much money from insurance, because the premium is high and they're not covered 100 percent anyway. The day after the World Series ends, surely we'll hear that it doesn't affect things because the insurance was factored into the budget all along.
   34. Howie Menckel Posted: September 15, 2018 at 09:51 AM (#5744794)
the word is that a deal was reached with the insurance company to allow for this scenario.
   35. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: September 15, 2018 at 01:07 PM (#5744825)
Gonzalez never led the league in HR again, but he led in doubles in 1998, and of course won two MVP awards.


Completely undeserved MVP's, but MVP's nonetheless.
   36. Adam Starblind Posted: September 15, 2018 at 01:19 PM (#5744830)

the word is that a deal was reached with the insurance company to allow for this scenario.



I was accounting for the likelihood that they no longer had to pay the premium. That's my point. The money will surely go right into the Wilpons' pockets.
   37. BDC Posted: September 15, 2018 at 01:47 PM (#5744834)
Completely undeserved MVP's, but MVP's nonetheless


:-D Be that as it may, Juan Gonzalez became a darn good hitter 1996-99. He was the budget-conscious man's Jim Rice.
   38. Adam Starblind Posted: September 15, 2018 at 06:40 PM (#5744916)
"Juan Gone" was a HOF-caliber nickname though.
   39. The Yankee Clapper Posted: September 15, 2018 at 07:38 PM (#5744941)
I remember getting into fights here with chuckleheads who thought Pablo Sandoval was obviously better.

They're pretty close this year, both have zero WAR, although Sandoval gets the edge in playing time.
   40. puck Posted: September 15, 2018 at 08:46 PM (#5744957)
At his best, one of the top players in the NL. Probably the only other Mets-developed position player even close to him in talent would be Darryl (who put up almost all of the value of his 17 year career in his 8 seasons with the Mets; another "shoulda been").


The Mets' top 10 WAR list for batters is surprisingly thin (surprising to me, anyway).

   41. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: September 15, 2018 at 08:52 PM (#5744959)
"Juan Gone" was a HOF-caliber nickname though.

As was Senor Octubre.
   42. bobm Posted: September 16, 2018 at 01:53 AM (#5745017)
I was accounting for the likelihood that they no longer had to pay the premium. That's my point. The money will surely go right into the Wilpons' pockets.

Without a doubt.

Anthony DiComo

✔@AnthonyDiComo

Jeff Wilpon said the Mets do not reinvest their David Wright insurance money back into the payroll because they must pay for the policy and for 25% of Wright's contract, and don't want to get caught way over budget in the event that Wright does return.

3:09 PM - Jan 23, 2018

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