David Wright's walk year isn't until 2013, but 2012 has been his walk year in another way.
David Wright will qualify for free agency at the end of 2013, barring a contract extension. Coming up with a superior third baseman to hit the open market over the past decade proves difficult. The best candidates are Adrian Beltre (thrice if you include his post-Seattle dip) and Alex Rodriguez (though he never seemed to entertain non-Yankees suitors). Wright is a five-time, soon-to-be six-time, All-Star, a two-time winner of the Gold Glove and Silver Slugger awards at third base, and a three-time top-10 finisher in MVP voting. Franchise third basemen at Wright’s age (he turns 30 in December) seldom hit free agency.
Wright’s .412/.513/.626 line serves two purposes: it paces the Mets and perpetuates the contract year myth. Invariably, Wright’s line will deflate. His batting average will drop below .400, his on-base percentage below .500, his slugging percentage below .600. Citi Field’s walls receded, but Wright isn’t likely to blow past his previous best season (.325/.416/.546 in 2007) by nearly .170 OPS points. But that reality aside, there is reason to think Wright’s gaudy start holds some genuine improvement.
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As the Mets embark upon an uncertain rebuilding phase, they're putting their faith in young pitchers, as they've done before.
Believe it or not, most of our writers didn't enter the world sporting an @baseballprospectus.com address; with a few exceptions, they started out somewhere else. In an effort to up your reading pleasure while tipping our caps to some of the most illuminating work being done elsewhere on the internet, we'll be yielding the stage once a week to the best and brightest baseball writers, researchers and thinkers from outside of the BP umbrella. If you'd like to nominate a guest contributor (including yourself), please drop us a line.
Jonathan Bernhardt is a freelance writer born in Baltimore who lives and works in New York City. He is an occasional contributor to the Et tu, Mr. Destructo? blog.
New general manager Sandy Alderson is the right person to fix the dysfunctional Mets.
Last week, the Mets took a bold step away from four years of ever-increasing disappointment and organizational chaos by hiring Sandy Alderson to succeed Omar Minaya as their general manager. The soon-to-be-63-year-old Alderson, who spent 15 years as the GM of the Oakland Athletics, was by far the most experienced candidate in a field which also included former Diamondbacks GM Josh Byrnes, former Royals GM Allard Baird, White Sox assistant GM Rick Hahn, Dodgers assistant GM Logan White, and Blue Jays special assistant Dana Brown. Perhaps just as importantly, Alderson is the first Mets GM to ascend to the post from outside the organization since Frank Cashen in 1980. He is a fresh start for an organization in desperate need of one.
In general, it's a bad thing if you can associate an umpire's name with his work.
In general, it's a bad thing if you can associate an umpire's name with his work. It's one thing if the umpire is Doug Harvey, and you're talking about his "Rules of the Game" segment on the old Game of the Week, back when that term actually meant something. (Something horrible.) It's still another when umpire's name is Don Denkinger, and you're in the wrong part of the midwest. Even more strange and upsetting is the recent revelation of the activities of Frank Pulli and Richie Garcia in the 1980's. Rule 21 is serious business, and with all the scrutiny on MLB's main office right now, I'm kind of surprised that they didn't completely hang those two out to dry.