Wright, 35, is attempting to return to the major leagues after over two full years away from the game due to multiple surgeries (neck, shoulder, back), all stemming from a 2015 spinal stenosis diagnosis.
In 15 games shared between Advanced-A St. Lucie and Triple-A Las Vegas while on his rehab assignment, the 35-year-old Virginian went 8-for-51 with two runs batted in.
During his press conference, Callaway alluded to having some input as to when Wright could be ready.
“I think I’ll get a little say since I’m finally gonna get to see him on the field tomorrow even if it is in a [simulated game] situation,” he said. “We’re gonna put him through the grinder a little bit.”
“He’ll get about six at-bats, we’ll put him out in the field, hit some live fungoes to him, some flip fungoes where he’s gotta read the ball of the bat, turn two, throw to first…,” he said. “We’re gonna get to see exactly where he’s at, and more importantly, we’re gonna see the next day how he recovers. All of the coaches are going to get an eye on him.”
When asked about Wright’s role if-and-when he does return, Callaway was honest and realistic.
“We want to put him in a spot where he can go out there and feel like he can do the job, be successful at whatever he’s going to do…and come out healthy,” he said. “This is just really continuing his rehab and trying to get him to a place where he can go out there and be ready to play.”
John Ricco spoke to the press today and, as per James Wagner of the New York Times, says the call to allow Wright to return is “largely medical, but the team makes the determination if a player can play at the major league level.”
Ricco was also asked (Wagner) how much the insurance policy on Wright factored into the team’s decisions, to which he replied, “Our focus has been to get David back as a full-time player”.
Ricco, as per Tim Britton of The Athletic, says that the Mets “[don’t] want Wright back ceremonially but as a potential contributor”.
Let the man do his job. He’s worked hard enough to make it all the way to this point. The only way to find out if he’s still got “it” is to let him work it out on his own terms. If his terms include giving it a shot at the highest level, hasn’t he done enough to earn that right?