Last night made it official; the fans and the baseball world have granted David Wright one of the coolest and most prestigious nicknames a ballplayer could have, originating right here on MMO: Captain America. Team USA was on the brink of elimination in the first round of the World Baseball Classic, however with one slam of the bat — a grand slam at that — immediately prompted this tweet from Joe D.
Hell Yeah!!! David Wright + Grand Slam + Team USA = Captain America! 😀
— Mets Merized Online (@MetsMerized) March 10, 2013
Last night “David Wright” and “Captain America” both were trending worldwide on Twitter, and 39% of all tweets about the WBC has “Wright” mentioned in it. The amount of popularity and ravings from fans of all walks of life has been astounding, Never has the entire baseball fanbase as a whole gotten behind a single player in the WBC like they have with Wright in these 2013 games.
It has been debated whether Wright needs to be officially named captain of the Mets or not. After this past week, who needs a little stitch of cloth when you have been deemed Captain America by the baseball world. Is there any higher honor?
Wright is 7-for-16 with a grand slam, two doubles, four runs scored, 12 total bases and the most impressive of all: 10 RBIs, half of which came last night. Only Ken Griffey Jr. and Korea’s Seung Yeop Lee have reached that same mark, both coming in 2006. In all likelihood Wright will surpass them when USA takes on the Dominican Republic Thursday at 7pm. However it is in his leadership alongside his incredible performance that he has risen to such a high level of popularity.
The World Baseball Classic has been said not to carry much meaning, and that it’s more of an inconvenience to teams to have their best players absent from Spring Training. Try saying that to the millions watching around the world and now a record number of American’s tuning in, much in part to the show being put on Wright. Try saying that to wounded combat veteran Felix Perez, who we met last week in this touching video on his friendship with the Captain, and saw elated last evening as he cheered on his favorite player and pal. Try telling that to those who feel a sense of pride in their country, and are inspired by seeing their favorite players fight and claw for every victory to more closer and closer to becoming champions.
Wright and the 2013 Team USA have made this loosely followed competition into a religiously viewed event by fans across the country as they they anxiously await what will happen next. David Wright has made the Classic fun to watch, and as a result has catapulted himself into the figurehead role of this squad. His leadership has encouraged his fellow teammates to player harder and accept nothing else other than victory.
— John Blundell (@JBMLBPR) March 7, 2013
Prior to the start of the WBC, a group of US soldiers gave Team USA an American flag, one that has hung in their dugout throughout the course of this improbable run. Those soldiers want to see the country they’ve fought so hard for, lift up that trophy and celebrate as true World Champions of America’s sport.
Team USA is playing for much more than just pride, they are playing for the name on their chest, not the one on their back, and that carries a high honor and responsibility, and no one knows that more than Wright. He has indeed been the Derek Jeter of this team, and if these first few games are any implication of what’s to come for Wright and Team USA, then all I can say is we are in for one hell of an upcoming week.