New York Mets
David Wright played golf on Tuesday in his native Virginia and was not monitoring the press conference introducing Terry Collins. Still, the third baseman did have a chance to chat with Collins on Monday night.
"His passion is pretty evident just in talking to him on the phone," Wright said. "And then I got a chance to be around him for just a few weeks before spring training. He was running things down in Port St. Lucie before spring training started. Just from being around him that short time and the short conversation we had yesterday, it's very clear that he's got a passion for what he does. It seems like he's always thinking about baseball, and really just has a mind that doesn't stop. He's just always thinking about something about the game."
Collins suggested he has mellowed since his last major league managerial experience in 1999. Still, how might a Type A personality in a manager be received in the Mets' clubhouse is an open question. How will players respond?
"I think good," Wright said. "Obviously with the lack of success we've had the last few years, you understand that you have to embrace the change. You know that you have a personality that is fiery, extremely competitive -- I think that's a good thing. Personally, I'm looking forward to playing for him and being around him. When you don't have success, you have to mix things up. I'm excited to play for Terry. I'm excited for the fire and the passion that he brings."
Collins specifically brought up Wright as a player who has to be assertive as a leader, although Collins noted it's not a prerequisite to be a high-profile player to have that role.
"Each year I feel more and more comfortable in that role," Wright said. "You realize when you've gone through the years that we've gone through lately, some things need to change. I'll take as much responsibility as anybody. We do -- and me, just as much as anybody else -- needs to step up and be more of a leader and a better leader. I'm looking forward to that challenge this year. I do feel comfortable in that role. Each year I feel more and more comfortable. I'm at the point now where it's time to change some things up and really get going, because what we've had the last few years hasn't been working. I want to win just as much as anybody. I'm going to do my part to make sure that happens."