April 6.10: Wright steps up for his team.

David Wright spoke in basic, but his smile told a much more complex story.

First inning, Citi Field, yesterday afternoon and Wright was rounding the bases after hitting a two-run, opposite-field homer off Josh Johnson … his smile carrying him as much as his legs.

Wright, who seemingly talked himself out of hitting for power early in the season, and later that lost summer was felled with a concussion after taking a Matt Cain fastball to his head, had just gotten the Mets off to a fast start in turning the page from a disastrous 2009.

Could one swing of the bat set the tone for a summer?

“I don’t put too much stock into home runs,’’ said Wright, who hit only ten of them last year, one of them last Opening Day he was quick to remind when the “tone’’ word surfaced.

Logic says no, that Mets 7, Marlins 1, was simply one game, but the game gave us a glimpse of what could happen when Wright’s team puts it all together for an afternoon. Yesterday was a blue print of what needs to happen.

The Mets need pitching more than power and Johan Santana was superb. And, with their suspect rotation, they need the bullpen late and Fernando Nieve gave them two sterling innings and Francisco Rodriguez was perfect.

Last summer, the Mets hit a major league low 95 homers – the only team not to hit 100 – so their offense must generate runs and take advantage of what is offered. So many opportunities were wasted last year, but yesterday they parlayed three Florida errors into four runs. A gift, yes, but too many times last year they came away empty in similar spots.

The new guys, Gary Matthews, Jason Bay and Rod Barajas had two hits apiece, and Matthews showed he can cover center until Carlos Beltran’s return.

“I think it was an all-around good effort,” Wright said. “We caught the ball, we pitched well and obviously had some timely hitting. You can’t ask for much more than that, first game of the season.’’

Wright is correct, it’s only one game, but it’s better than if it had been one game the other way. For a team coming off two late season collapses and a free-fall summer, that played with frustrating mediocrity this spring, winning sure as hell beats losing.

“By no stretch of the imagination are we where we want to be right now,’’ said manager Jerry Manuel, who looks at winning in a more personal, job-preserving vein. “The important thing is that as you put the pieces into place that you win games.

“We played well. We played all 27 outs.’’

There will be times this summer when they don’t. All teams, even champions, have those moments. And, there will be times this summer when the smile Wright wore yesterday will be a frown.

But, it was finally nice to see him smile.

“It’s good to see David get started,’’ Jeff Francoeur said. “David has to step up. It has to be his team.’’

And, yesterday it was.

26 thoughts on “April 6.10: Wright steps up for his team.

  1. Keith said it best. David needs to rip at the ball. the bat and ball will do the rest.
    Last year david mentioned and it was obvious he was “feeling” for the ball. OK i guess they all know what that means. Probably like how Jacobs was swinging at the ball.
    Davids swings yesterday looked good. lets see what happens the rest of the season but if he keeps it up. then the old Wright is back in town.

  2. caught the rewind and heard the same.

    i saw our starting pitcher play well. i saw the closer not get bored with a 6 run lead. i saw our power guys get good swings. it was a good game on a good day.

    what i would like to see for tomorrow is david and jason be 4/5 or 3/4.

    i would like sybill to explain how a mlb reject becomes our cleanup hitter. the most important power position in the lineup. we paid 20 million for a guy to replace delgado – our previous cleanup hitter – and we get this scrub as the #4 guy by our brilliant incoherent manager.

  3. agreed. why not francoer or bay or wright didnt get that spot is beyond me. what happened to murphy , he’s still on the team correct? or was he shown the door?

  4. Steve C: Murphy is injured and out 2 to 6 weeks with a sprained MCL. Way to be up on your Met facts Stevie. ;-)

  5. My unsung hero from yesterday’s game was Luis Castillo. Hustled his butt off twice, on the DP ball he hit that he beat out which allowed Wright his time up in the first, and the hustle down to first when the 1bman comitted an error. He also stole second as well.

  6. 4.) sorry i must have missed that issue. Yes I have to be in canada every so often so not sure when that ocurred :-P

  7. And yes, horrendous decision to bat Jacobs 4th. Completely idiotic. Completely Jerry.

  8. you have so many other alleged power bats. and look the only one not to get a hit the whole game. number 4

  9. Ah, yes the guy who knocks people for not having a formal “education” is too stupid to be able to keep up on things when he is in Canada. C. you can have a degree and still prove to the world how stupid you are every day. Congrats. Enjoy your sterile site Delcos. Sadecki knew what he was doing.

  10. Steve-O. I agree with you on castillo. Not my favorite but he wants to keep his job so he uses those bionic knees full out. I will give him that…

  11. John – A nicely written account of a nice game for the Mets.

    David surely made a point with the first inning home run and set the scene for success. Doesn’t need much help though with Santana on the mound. He’s a given. The team itself seems to work well together and perhaps some of that is due to the players brought in this season.

    It’s a great start, and let’s hope that the spirit and the actions continue until well into October.

  12. Johann the Magnificent. I’m beginning to wonder if he is better than Tom Seaver which is praise indeed. Now if he can only duplicate Charley “Old Hoss” Radbourn’s 1884 season with the Providence Grays of 60 wins and 678 innings.

    For at least one day the Mets are the best team in New York.

  13. Dan (13): Santana is probably the game’s best pitcher, but I don’t think you could compare him to Seaver. At least not yet. Seaver was a special talent who had a magnificent career.-JD

  14. (17) Harrys upset. The Mets won and did nothing wrong yesterday. LOL

  15. (20) How bout we settle: Best lefty: Santana, Best Righty: Lincecum. Sounds good to me. What happened to Sadecki by the way?

  16. i have to agree. there’s only one tom terrific.
    just one doc gooden..
    Santana is another star but not the same one. talented yes, thank god for us!

  17. SteveO (21): Can’t tell you about Sadecki … he just disappeared without a trace …. too bad …. he was around from the beginning and brought something to the table. I hope he drops by again.-JD

  18. DWright- changed stance, looked comfortable, hard line out to 3rd as well

    the team looked to be hustling (castillo beat out DP in 1st which led to HR)

    few erros, max hustle…this team needs it especially w/o reyes/beltran
    more importantyl, if the fans see the mets giving max effort and playing clean baseball i think it will help the atmosphere at citi field

  19. Jim –

    How nice to have you back – I loved the fact that you came to New York and took your grandfather to the game. Hope your restaurant is doing well.

    I thought the Opening Day game was almost perfect – let’s hope that there are more games like that this year.

  20. one can only hope Annie. but in the past M&M were rally busters messing with a lineup that worked.
    Currently they need to reposition jacobs in the lineup. if we need him because he’s the only 1st baseman so be it. but batting 4th, that belongs to someone that is up to teh task. currently we have 3. bay/francoer and Wright. All 3 can hit. david had a real bad slump but if he actually dropped the monkey off his back there you have it.
    lets see what happens today.