Wilpons belong in the Hall of Shame for This

John From Albany noted, in response to my conclusion that David Wright was the Mets' best hitter in the 2010-19 decade despite his difficult and disabling injuries, that "After he was hurt the last half of the decade, we forget how good David was the first half. Funny that this post is happening on the anniversary of when the owner said he was a "good" but not "great" player.

Not a superstar, I think was the exact word Wilpon used.

That triggered me - not at John, but AT THE WILPONS.  


David Wright was a GREAT player, done in by two things, one of which (# 1, Mr. Wilpon) was extremely controllable:
1) The asinine, owner-created dimensions of the original and second iteration of Citifield dimensions that stole so many homers and doubles from David. And many of those shots were caught, sagging his career average.

Meanwhile, Colorado dimensions gave Nolan Arenado a huge home field hitting advantage.

Without a doubt, on neutral fields, Wright was the superior hitter to Arenado. You put Wright in Coors Field for his career, as injury-shortened as it was, and he would be on his way to the Hall of Fame anyway, because his #s would have been SO MUCH BETTER.

2) Injuries. Perhaps if David had realized he was not indestructible, he would have played more cautiously and still be capable of playing. Perhaps not.

Numbers over a long period rarely lie, so let's look at them:

Arenado on the road - career: .265/.323/.476

David Wright on the road - career: .294/.366/.485

Wright was markedly better on the road than Arenado, despite his career road numbers no doubt lessened by playing injured in his latter years.

But Arenado got to play in a super-hitter-friendly park while Wright has dealt with home parks that over his career ranged from pitchers' parks to hitters' nightmares. 

Arenado at home - career: .324/.380/.615
Wright at home - career: .299/.387/.497

If Wright's superiority in road numbers is a true baseline of how much better offensively he was than Arenado, then if Wright had played in Coors Field, his home numbers would have been similarly higher than the edge he had over Arenado on the road.

What does that mean in numbers?

Wright at home, if Coors was his home park: .355/.425/.625.

If so, Wright's career home-and-away numbers would have been .328/.408/.561.

That gets him into the Hall of Fame, even with his limited at bats in his career.  Koufax got in despite limited innings and years, too.

Arenado's far greater than Wright's home splits, despite better road splits for Wright are 1000% the Wilpon's fault, plain and simple. 

You Wilpon guys are the owners, so OWN THAT.

Graphic examples of hitters whose numbers in a huge park were drastically different than on the road were noted in a recent article by me:

Donn Clendenon once hit 25 road homers, but just 3 in enormous Forbes Field one season.

Roberto Clemente had 95 triples and just 86 HRs at home in Forbes, an extremely odd ratio, but had far more HRs than triples everywhere else, where dimensions were more normal.

I'll stop here.  Point made.  The Wilpons should apologize to David Wright.  He WAS great.


Mack Ade said...

Tom -

An interesting theory, but David Wright won't get into the Hall because he didn't play long enough and doesn't have the career stat line needed to rank with the big guys there.

He got injured, Period, And, as much as I despise the Wilpons, they didn't cause the genetic problems in David's neck.

Mack's Mets said...


Thanks for the shout out.

J.D. Davis called. He likes Citi Field just the way it is.

In 2019, JD Davis had the best year in Citi Field’s 11 year history hitting .354 with 16 HRs and 33 RBIs in 206 at bats. Furthermore, while most Mets hit far better on the road, JD hit almost 100 points less on the road, .260 with 6 HRs and 24 RBIs.

Eddie Corona said...

Sorry Tom
I always loved your writing and opinion but David Wright (who I debate is my favorite Met) was not a Hall Of famer and probably not the best player on the best Mets Teams... Beltran was the best player in the collapse years and Delgado was probably the most feared.
Then Cespedes and Murphy carried the next run.

Ok you dont have to be the best player on your team to Be a hall of Famer. Well in my memory David was never the guy you feared. It was never you get this guy out because David is next.

I will tell you Bernie Williams who is also not a hall of famer had a better career than David and also an assassin at the plate.

Yes the dimension (which was approved by Wilpon) but was Omar's design hurt David immensely

but he was a excellent Ball player and a great side kick, A robin but no Batman....

Reese Kaplan said...

David Wright was an All Star caliber player but the injuries and ballpark dimensions did him in. He wasn't even the All Star on many seasons when he was healthy and eligible. That alone should point out he is not Cooperstown material. We all know what it was like to have Seaver who was a home grown Met go into the HOF, but they have not grown the equivalent hitter yet. No one except a few sniping sportswriters denied Seaver's proper residence there. Few would support Wright based upon his accomplishments. We'll see if Pete Alonso is that guy eventually.

Tom Brennan said...

I hear you, gentlemen,and thank you for your views.

Let me respond why I think you are wrong.

Yes, Wright had injuries. But Shea Stadium wasn't a hitter friendly park, yet in his 4 full pre-Citifield seasons, he averaged 42 doubles, 29 HRs and 112 RBIs, and hit .310, and stole 86 of 108. Hall of Fame caliber #s. In 2009, in the Cavern, though, his 29 HRs dropped - plunged - to 10. He returned to 29 HRs the following season, which in Shea probably would have been 40+. He lost so many extra base hits, and hits period, out there.

His injuries, as a Met and had they never left cozier-than-Citfield Shea, would have left him short of the Hall. I agree. However, if he had played for Philly or Colorado, as I suggested, his numbers would have been clearly better (Philly) or much better (Colorado). Or had Shea's/Citi's dimensions been the same even as Philly's, and had owners decided to help out Delgado, Beltran, and Wright by making it more hitter-friendly.

One key factor you perhaps are not considering:

Charisma does translate into extra HOF votes - and no one had more of that than Captain America. On the non-charisma side, Albert Belle was a hitting machine for 10 years, in which he had 381 doubles, 373 HRs and 1,199 RBIs, despite the 1994 strike-shortened year, in which he had 36 HRs and 101 RBIs in 106 games - but I believe Belle capped out at a mere 3.5% because he was despised by many writers. Ralph Kiner had slightly inferior numbers to Belle, and one of them is in the Hall, the other never got close.

Give David Wright Albert Belle's sensational 10 season run and he would have been voted in. In my humble opinion. Put Wright in Colorado and he would have been in. Put him in Philly and he may well have snuck in.

Mack's Mets © 2012