The New York Mets (21-17) are defying expectations so far in this 2012 season, much the same way as their ancestors did in 1969, but we cannot compare those teams too much because it is a different era. With wild cards and three divisions in each league, Major League Baseball has changed considerably. For the Mets to ever have a shot at the World Series this year, they will have to be ten times more amazing than their 1969 counterparts, and they will need a few miracles as well. Still, for Mets fans there is much to smile about this year, and one of the biggest reasons for this is third baseman David Wright.
To borrow the words of Winston Churchill (who was describing Russia at the time), Wright has often been "a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma." Filled with potential from his first days as a rookie, Wright has managed to delight and confound fans and teammates alike with his skills, his dry spells, and his injuries.
Perhaps he is just a victim of early success, with a solid rookie year in 2004 (in which he hit 14 homers, drove in 40 runs, and hit .293) followed by a fantastic sophomore year (27 homers, 102 RBI, .306 batting average), Wright set the bar high in the expectations department. He would go on to have four 100+ RBI seasons in a row, playing excellent defense at third base, and establishing himself as a leader on the team. He along with Jose Reyes, who also was a rookie in 2004, seemed to be the future of what could be another great Mets team.
Then 2009 and Citi Field happened to Wright, making him look like he lost his stroke (though he hit .307 but with only 10 homers and 72 RBI) and his direction. There was lots of talk about "trade him while you can" and that sort of thing, but I always felt that Wright would get himself straightened out and be the player that showed so much promise early on.