It must sting quite a bit to be the captain of your ball club and only take the field when shaking a fellow teammates victorious hand.
For the past few of years, it’s been tough to watch David Wright spend another spring training desperately trying to salvage a semblance of his former self. The Mets once franchise player, plagued by a heartbreaking series of injuries and surgical procedures, is languishing in the dugout, unable to make a throw or swing a bat.
Wanting to be in control of his own destiny, Wright’s battered body is unfortunately winning the war over his hopeful mind. “It’s something where if I didn’t enjoy playing, if I didn’t really have a passion or desire for the game then it would be simple,” he said, “It would be easy. But I think another part of that passion and that love is I think every athlete strives to be able to exit on their own terms and not because of an injury. So I think some of that certainly is, that I wanted to tell the game when I’m done, not my back to tell me or my shoulder to tell me when I’m done. You know what I’m saying?”
As comforting and cozy it is to see him on the bench, still looking capable in his uniform, it’s a tease that we’ll never see him in the batter’s box, and if we do, it’ll be short lived. For the 35-year-old seven-time All-Star, it’s a bitter pill he’s ready to swallow. “I’m not going to do anything to risk the next 50 years of my life. I made that abundantly clear. To this day if the doctor says hey, you could do something to damage your long term then it’s the easiest decision I’ll ever have.”
With this most likely being his last tango in Port St. Lucie, he will be touted as one of the best third basemen the Wilpon’s money could buy – a rare modern day player who spent his entire career playing home games in Queens. From 2005-2009 he hit over .300, and if not for some errant throws and dubious pitching decisions he may have been the recipient of a World Series ring in 2015.
So as Wright keeps showing up, punching the clock, time may be ticking on his coveted roster spot.