If you ask New York Mets fans which batter has the biggest impact on the lineup they would undoubtedly give the same response. He is known as Mr. Met, Captain America or simply the Captain. He is the leader of the Mets and has the most long-term contract of anybody on the team. He is the reason why fans go to Citi Field. He is David Wright.
He is the only Mets player casual baseball fans have heard of besides Matt Harvey. Wright does not receive as much national attention as Harvey only because he does not have the same appetite for fame as him. When CougarLife.com, a dating website that connects young men connect with older, mature women, reached out to him in June about a campaign to vote him into the All-Star Game he declined. Wright is humble, professional and only wants attention brought upon him if it is based on the Mets winning and his performance on the field.
David Wright has hit third in the Mets lineup more consistently than anyone else in the lineup throughout the entire 2013 season. Wright has a career batting average of .301, on-base percentage of .382 and .506 slugging. He is surpassing those numbers in 2013 so far with a .307/.395/.515 line. Not to mention that he is a two-time Gold Glove winner and has been playing spectacular defense at the hot corner this season.
At age 30 and going into his tenth season, Wright has developed a reputation as the toughest out in the lineup. What is extraordinary about his career-topping statistics is that he has prospered with little to no protection in the lineup this season. Wright is a highly intelligent hitter that generally restraints himself from pitches outside of the strike zone. His opponents tend to pitch him away because they know Wright can attack the strike zone. His patience leads to a high walk rate. He drew a career-high 94 walks in both 2007 and 2008 and already has 50 this season.
Wright has also been a threat on the base paths. He currently has 15 steals and is on pace for about 25 stolen bases on the season. Wright has improved on his running game compared to recent years. He swiped 15 bags last season, 13 in 2011 and 19 in 2010.
David Wright’s power numbers have declined from early in his career, but his lower RBI count is mostly incumbent upon his teammates not setting the table for him when he gets hits. He is still a considerable threat on an 0-2 count because his hitting zone is red hot on a ball down and over the plate, as well as dead middle and up and away, in that situation. His ability to produce on two-strike counts in multiple areas of the strike zone explains his high average
The New York Mets might be a long shot from playoff contention this season, but there is more hope for the future than there has been over the past several years. Pitching prospects Noah Syndergaard and Rafael Montero will eventually become strong young arms for the rotation, Zack Wheeler recently arrived and Matt Harvey is the ace. Sandy Alderson will finally have a sizeable budget to work with in 2014 and the crippling contracts of Jason Bay and Johan Santana will be off the books.
Wright is not quite as scorching as he was in 2006 and 2007 but he is still highly productive and a difficult out. Many superstars falter in the first year of a long-term contract. The Mets push for the playoffs next season will largely fall on the shoulders of Wright and the players general manager Sandy Alderson surrounds him with.