It was MLB Network who first reported that David Wright was being “scratched” from last night’s match up between Team USA and the Dominican Republic with what they called a “sore back.”
After Team USA’s 3-1 loss to the Dominican Republic, Anthony DiComo of Mets.com shed additional light on the situation and reported that Wright began feeling the nagging injury sometime after he reported to Team USA’s camp in Scottsdale, Arizona on March 10, but played through it without incident.
On Thursday, the Mets were notified that Wright was dealing with some discomfort which prompted the team’s head trainer Ray Ramirez to get in touch with Team USA manager Joe Torre and asked that Wright be pulled from the lineup.
This morning, Sandy Alderson faced the issue head-on with reporters:
How severe is the injury?
“So David is flying directly to New York and will be up there today, be examined by our doctors there. We expect that he’ll fly back tomorrow, not today. In terms of the injury and it’s severity, we just don’t know any more than David has related already publicly. So until he’s actually examined, we won’t know the exact nature of the injury. We won’t know the extent of the injury. And we won’t have any sort of timetable for his return.”
He had that stress fracture in his back. Is this clearly in a different location?
“Again, there’s no reason to believe it’s connected to that. But he’s going to be examined today.”
Is there any concern that you only became aware of it Thursday if he indicated there had been an issue for a week?
“David is a guy that doesn’t overreact to things. He’s committed. When he makes commitments, he wants to execute on them, carry them out. I’m sure he felt a responsibility to Team USA. This is a difficult development for him to accept. But in the final analysis, we felt this was the right thing to do.”
David said he had discomfort even leading into the first Team USA game. You weren’t aware of that at all?
“Again, I didn’t hear his full remarks. I’m going to defer any response until we hear back from the doctors and have a fuller explanation from them, if that’s all right.”
Also, as to why didn’t Wright, who signed an eight-year, $138-million contract extension in the offseason, let the Mets know he was dealing with an injury? Alderson said he only learned of the situation on Thursday night after Wright told Team USA trainers.
Wow… As I said last night, the fact that this was an issue before Wright played his first game in the tournament is a major concern and points to a lack of good judgement.
After signing that mammoth extension this offseason, Wright had to put personal pride aside and consider the consequences of further exasperating the back soreness by playing.
The effect of what his potential loss could mean to the team was taken too lightly – and it seems he failed to communicate that he was feeling soreness at all to the team’s trainers. It’s reminiscent of similar circumstances in the past with Luis Castillo, Angel Pagan and Oliver Perez to name just a few. Those three were rebuked by management after it was learned they were playing through discomfort, and all three did end up making things worse by doing so.
It sounds like logic took a back seat in the decision-making process here.
Again, this could be nothing or it could be a something major, we still won’t know until after the exam, but seriously, what was Wright thinking?
Last night he said:
“I owe it to the Mets to listen to them and to be ready for Opening Day. That’s extremely important to me. That’s something I obviously don’t want to jeopardize.”
Currently, those comments don’y jibe with the facts as they are being reported.
A special thanks to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York for transcribing the Q&A with Sandy Alderson this morning, and you can read the full interview at his site.
This post has been updated on March 15 at 10:30 AM.