Let’s be honest, the Mets’ nine game deficit in the race for the second wild card berth (which is a joke in itself) may as well be a million at this point. That is not to say that the Mets are out of it, but I think, as fans, we can all agree that the odds of the team finding some of that first half magic are slim to none.
So, with potential post-season chatter coming to a halt, we have two things to talk about: R.A. Dickey’s push for a Cy Young award and the suddenly sprouted topic about David Wright and his chances of re-signing with the Mets. So, because today I feel like sparking a debate, let’s discuss the latter, shall we?
In an interview with the New York Post, David told the newspaper, “The money issue for me, I don’t think that will be the deciding factor… You want to be able to win, and I’ve only experienced a little bit of that here.” Well, I for one, see that statement as his easy out. First of all, as much as I deep down in my heart will always believe a tiny bit that it’s not all about the money, it is, in fact, all about the money, but he doesn’t want the fans to think that would be a reason for him leaving.
Now, of course, David isn’t going to come out and say something along the lines of, “Well, the ownership doesn’t seem to care about making pushes for playoff runs as we’ve seen this year when no moves were made at the trade deadline, and with the franchise’s financial situation in shambles I’d rather have my income come from a more reliable source.” But, if he did, could you disagree with him AT ALL?
The Mets would have to dole out 16 million dollars next season alone to keep David Wright from free agency. Is 16 million dollars really worth it?
If I thought the Mets legitimately had a shot at the World Series next year I would say… HELL NO. No one person is worth SIXTEEN MILLION DOLLARS for one (not even whole) year of work… But okay, putting things into a baseball perspective, then I would say sure, pay the man. As much as I love this team, and I will always support Tug McGraw’s notion of “Ya gotta believe,” I just cannot support paying a man that much money for one year, when the team will most likely end up with the same type of season it did this year.
Call me crazy (I said crazy, not maybe), but if David Wright does not re-sign with the Mets, I personally won’t be all that upset. Before you jump down my throat, let’s just take a step back and look at something: I said the same exact thing when Jose Reyes left. Mets fans didn’t want to see him go. He was a great player, yes, but, when push comes to shove, are the Mets really missing him, or the 9.5 million dollars more it would have cost to keep him?
I know there are some dedicated Wright fans out there who feel that David means so much to this franchise. He does have the Mets all-time records for RBIs, doubles, total bases, and runs scored, but, to me, stats are just a tangible aspect that too many fans cling on to. I’m not doubting that Wright loves being a Met or that he doesn’t try his hardest every day, but okay… well… maybe I am a little bit. It’s just a gut feeling that I get, but I don’t get any more excited when David comes up to bat than when Jordany Valdespin comes up to bat these days in a big situation. I’d almost rather have Valdespin up in a key spot right now.
Just a couple of weeks ago, Howie on WFAN called out David for not running to first base. It’s little things like that which drive me nuts. Aside from running it out, which most people probably don’t care about, I try to filter through my memory bank and I don’t pull out many “Oh my God, David Wright!” moments. That’s why I love to watch baseball, for those moments. I don’t just want to see a guy get a hit every 3 or 4 at bats. I don’t want to see a Sportscenter top 10 play once a month. I want to see a guy who oozes passion for his team, who, no matter what, goes out there and gets his shirt dirty, who riles up his teammates to make them believe that any one of them can start a rally when times get tough. I don’t think David is that guy.
If I learned anything from being a sports fan over the course of my entire life, it’s that life goes on. Franchises lose their top players (::ahem:: does anyone remember a little trade involving a one Mr. George Thomas Seaver?), and it stings at first, but both the team and the fans will get through it. Maybe I’m wrong in thinking that Wright’s statement to the Post isn’t his way of setting up his departure, and I’m sure there are tens of thousands who want to think I am wrong, but as these conversations carry on for the next few months it’s important to remember one thing: DON’T PANIC!