Posted by Ernest Dove at 2:00 PM
While many of us were waking up to the sounds and sights of happy and smiling children, I spent a few minutes checking out a few resources regarding my favorite team. During which time, I came across a USA Today article regarding my favorite player. Just in case a few of you haven't already heard, the article is about Mets captain David Wright representing the team by making a personal phone call to the family of one of the NYPD officers killed this past week while sitting in their police car.
"Wright spent 15 minutes on the phone with the two boys, and offered them tickets to Mets games next year, as well as an opportunity to come to spring training and hang with the team in the dugout during Grapefruit League games."
Let this be another reminder about who David Wright is, what he means to this organization, and what means to fans like me. As I've stated before in previous posts, in the end, baseball remains what it is intended to be, entertainment. I've been a fan since I was 9 years old. And as much as I also love to argue, complain and share my constitutional right to piss and moan privately or publicly about my team and its players, the bottom line is that they are still my team, and David Wright is still my captain.
We can talk all day about decrease in power numbers, too large of a contract given, and recent injuries for a man now into his 30s. We can also talk about a man who just spent 15 minutes making every effort to simply talk baseball, or life, with two teenagers whose lives just changed forever.
David Wright is a leader. Last time I checked, David Wright also still does not have a twitter account. We also learned in this article that the captain has no desire to be interviewed or further discuss this phone call to the family. Why, because he understands his time and place as a leader in our society. I assume he figures he doesn't have to spend his time (or pay someone to spend their time) tweeting, or going in front of cameras to publicly acknowledge his 'good deed'. He knows he doesn't have to. Because he wasn't raised that way. David Wright is the son of a cop. I am the son of a cop. Maybe we learned some of the same values. We probably both learned about the importance of people, helping other (privately not publicly) and simply going to work and doing the best you can.
For 20 years working in the NYPD, where he was given UNLIMITED sick time as an employee, my dad probably called out sick maybe a dozen times or so....... in 20 years combined. (well, ok, he was on leave of absence for a year and half following a motorcycle accident while on duty, but since I was conceived and born during that time, I'm certainly ok with that time off).
Anyway, my point is that David Wright is the actual role model that sports spends so much time talking about. And what's important is that he leads by example, and not by having more twitter followers then the next guy.
So for me, not only am I happy that Wright is leading my favorite team, I'm also happy that myself, along with my daughter, can make that little drive to Port St. Lucie in March wearing our matching David Wright shirts, and have no fear of the Mets trading away our star, because he basically has a lifetime contract at this point. And that's ok with me.
I don't know what kind of 'production' we will see from the captain. I don't know if his power will come back, or if his defense will regress, or where he will bat in the batting order the next 5 or so years. However, what I do know is that I will continue to wear my David Wright shirt every year, (yeah my 2 year old daughter may need a bigger size in the coming years, and I need to diet). And I can always tell my daughter to proud to wear a shirt/jersey of a man with no criminal record, no DUI arrests, no football taunting penalties, and simply a person with a passion for baseball, and passion for others.
Win or lose, I'm still a Mets fan. 4-4 or 0-4, David Wright is still my favorite player.
Happy Holidays and Happy New Year everybody