MIAMI – Whether or not David Wright had been named captain in late March, moments like this week in Miami are what make the third baseman a leader, Terry Collins said.
New York Mets
After neck stiffness kept him out of the starting lineup Monday night, Wright hurried back. He pleaded with his manager to start Tuesday despite the lingering issue. He then produced three hits, a homer and scored three runs Wednesday afternoon as the Mets rallied for a desperately needed 7-6 win.
“He came in yesterday and told me he wanted to play,” Collins said. “I said, ‘Let’s just see how you are in a little while.’ He said, ‘Well, I’m going to get treatment, but I want to play.’ He said, ‘I’ve got to be in the lineup. We’re going through a tough time, and this is when I need to be in there.’ He’s absolutely right. That’s why he’s the captain, because he rises when you need him. He’s there when you need him. He’s the guy that everybody looks at to lead the way.”
Wright downplayed talking himself into Tuesday’s lineup.
“You want to try to be in there to help out because obviously we’ve been struggling,” said Wright, who was wrapped almost like a mummy around his neck and back at his locker after Wednesday’s win. “But it doesn’t really matter the situation. I’d like to play. And I feel like if I can help the team more than I can hurt them, then I’d like to be out there.”
Given the lingering issue, though, Wright is looking forward to an off-day Thursday before a weekend series in Atlanta.
“Tomorrow is going to be good to try to get some rest,” Wright said. “If I feel like I can help, then I want to play. The off day is going to be good, though.”