David Wright: New York’s Tragic Hero

David Wright should be a Hall of Famer. He could have easily done so with the type of career he was having with the Mets. He holds a majority of the club’s career batting records. And he quickly grew to be a bright and beloved character of New York baseball. (More so than that other guy who played shortstop in the Bronx all those years, am I right?) But much like tragedy and disappointment, and the years of “almost” have haunted the Mets. The same fate seems to have come for their captain as well.

This morning we were once again greeted with headlines of David Wright having another setback in his journey towards making a return to baseball.

Wright was quoted in an article by Joel Sherman of the New York Post article recently saying:

“The mental part of coming in and knowing you bring nothing to the table as far as helping the team get ready for the season and helping the team win, for me, is the hardest part; as hard as physical part of the rehab process…my head can hit the pillow and I know I made every effort to play.”

For the past three seasons, my stance was 100% behind Wright trying to make his comeback. Aside from Mike Piazza, he was one of the few Mets that I grew up watching play. And nothing would bring me more joy than seeing that man back at third base. I defended his setbacks constantly. And yet reading this article this morning finally took that final toll on what hope I had left. So it’s with a heavy heart that I finally say, “David Wright, I think it may be time to retire.”

Just look at that quote above. Those are the words of a man who is desperately clawing, and clinging to something that the world is trying to have him let go of. And I cannot even begin to imagine what it must be like to have to give up doing that thing you love so much for a living because your body won’t allow it anymore. It’s hard to let go.

He’s tried so hard to make this comeback to prove to his team that he did everything he could. We know you did David. I don’t think anyone looks at that man and thinks “he could have done more.” It’s gotten to the point where it’s become painfully sad to just watch this cycle of rehab and setbacks. Taking two steps forward and three steps in reverse.

David Wright will likely never get that Hall of Fame call that we all once thought he was destined for. Regardless, of whether he makes it back to the field this season, (or at all at this point), Mets fans are going to forever see him as our hero. He’s always going to be our captain. And sometimes being a good captain means knowing when your time is up. Knowing that you gave everything you could – and that it was enough.