New York Mets captain David Wright got to play in a game of baseball and said that he was happy to be back playing.
New York Mets third baseman David Wright has not played an MLB game since May of 2016, missing over two seasons of action for the team. However, he took a big step towards a return on Sunday afternoon when he played in a rehab game.
Wright went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts in five innings of action, but he told ESPN after the game that he was happy to have gotten back on the field saying “I’m all smiles.”
Wright is aware of the fact that being on the field is the most important aspect of his rehab for him, and that he can’t worry much about the results right now.
“It was good to get out there. Hopefully the results will come, but for now, getting three at-bats, going out playing the field for five innings, seeing some pitches, seeing some really dominant pitching.”
Wright, who carries a career slash of .296/.376/.491 and has hit 242 home runs while stealing 196 bases, is hoping to beat the odds and get back on an MLB field despite having issues with his back, shoulder, and neck.
Many players, including Yankees legend Don Mattingly, have been forced to end their careers prematurely due to injury. That Wright has stuck around so long is a testament to his desire to return to the only MLB team he has ever known.
Wright is aware that he likely won’t be able to play every game like he did in his prime, saying he knows off days will be needed.
“What I’ve kind of come to realize, these last two months of this baseball-rehab stuff is that I certainly need off days periodically.”
Wright did make three rehab appearances last season but was forced to shut it down after those games and was unable to return to the Mets at all.
Both he and Mets fans must also be aware of the fact that Wright will probably not be the same player who defined Mets baseball for a decade. A taste of that was experienced in 2016 when he hit .226 with a 438 slugging percentage in 37 games.
Wright’s uncertain future, something he acknowledged in the spring, prompted the team to sign Todd Frazier to man third base. Frazier has gone to the disabled list twice thus far, despite having never gone on the disabled list before joining the Mets.
However, Wright does not intend for his return to baseball to end with a rehab assignment, telling reporters he intends to play in the majors again.
“I wouldn’t be out here in 95-degree sunny Florida dripping sweat if I didn’t think I could make it back.”
If Wright can make it back (a big if), the most likely scenario would involve him joining the team when rosters expand in September.