Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |
Here's a piece of unsolicited advice for whoever ends up running baseball operations for the Mets: As your first move, make David Wright a significant voice in the front office. He's a bright baseball mind, beloved by the fans, and willing to serve.
On Tuesday evening, I asked Wright if he would like to be a part of the front office next year as a special assistant or advisor to a GM or president of baseball operations. He nodded.
"I'd love to stay involved," Wright said. "I love being around the game. I obviously love the organization. So I think I could provide value."
Wright made clear that he did not intend to force himself on anyone, and didn't want an incoming GM to feel obligated to use him (and he wasn't looking to make this statement -- I sought him out with the question). But the view from here is that the new GM or president should make sure this happens.
During his two-year rehab process, which included significant time in Port St. Lucie and with other affiliates, Wright found great fulfillment in working with and mentoring young players. He could immediately serve in a teaching role with prospects throughout the minor league system, particularly infielders.
Knowing Wright, I'd suggest an even bigger role than that. He is a student of the game, and could be a valuable voice in the room at the trade deadline, or generally in player evaluation. Wright is just as sharp as many of the other assistant GMs or special advisors around the league, plenty of whom also played the game.
It's clear that Wright has the energy and desire do meaningful work. He's only 35, after all, way too young to move into a ceremonial club ambassador role, a la Mookie Wilson or John Franco.
When he returned to New York this month, he met with COO Jeff Wilpon. The conversations about his future remained preliminary, but Wilpon asked directly what Wright wanted to do. Wright said he was not interested in managing, coaching or broadcasting, but does love the game.
Well, that leaves the front office. The Mets could easily put him to work like Mike Piazza, who helps during spring training for several days a year. But they could also -- and should -- take advantage of his energy, loyalty and popularity, and give him real responsibilities.