David Wright sets Mets hits record

Updated: September 26, 2012, 11:13 PM ET
By Matt Ehalt | ESPNNewYork.com

NEW YORK -- Re-Wright the record book.

Mets third baseman David Wright is the new franchise leader in hits after recording his 1,419th hit in a 6-0 win against the Pirates at Citi Field on Wednesday night. He came into the game tied with former first baseman/outfielder Ed Kranepool with 1,418 hits, and went 2 for 4 to give himself 1,420 hits for his career.

[+] EnlargeDavid Wright
Alex Trautwig/Getty ImagesDavid Wright picked up his 1,419th hit as a Met, setting the all-time Mets record for career hits, at Citi Field on Wednesday.

"It's obviously humbling, a little more exciting (than tying the record), we won today," Wright said. "Eddie came and saw me before the game, wished me luck and just kind of reiterated that he's happy for me and excited for me and that meant a lot to me. I'm very proud and humbled at the same time and just really excited to be able to accomplish something like this."

Wright flew out to deep left in his first at-bat, with some fans thinking the third baseman had hit a home run. In the third, with a runner on first and one out, he hit a slow dribbler up the third-base line that third baseman Pedro Alvarez fielded and threw with one bounce to first. The throw got by first baseman Garrett Jones, and Wright had himself a single to cement the record. He also singled in the fourth and scored a run.

"I got a chance to show off my blazing speed," Wright said jokingly. "Ten years from now when I'm telling my kids it's going to be a line drive, a little different. I'll take it because a hit's a hit. Just really excited I could do it at home. The fans were great to me, the applause and the postgame sticking around and cheering for me, that meant a lot. To be able to do it here at home was extra special."

Wright, 29, broke the record in his 1,256th game with the Mets after being selected in the first round of the 2001 draft. The five-time All-Star is in his ninth year and has recorded at least 164 hits in seven of the past eight years. He has 171 hits this season.

Kranepool finished with 1,418 hits after 1,853 games spanning 18 seasons. He topped out at 133 hits during the 1965 campaign. Kranepool was a one-time All-Star who was part of the 1969 Miracle Mets, who defeated Baltimore to win their first World Series. His final season came in 1979.

In the Mets' clubhouse after the game, each television showed a picture of Wright's face on the left side of the screen, accompanied by a picture of him swinging with 1,420 written below it in orange letters on the right.

"It's remarkable. It's a testament to what a really, really good player he is," Mets manager Terry Collins said about Wright breaking the record quickly. "It's a testament to his work ethic. Even last year, he was never satisfied, always wanted to get better."

After tying the record Tuesday night, Wright didn't focus too much on his accomplishment as the Mets' struggles in the second half weigh on him. After starting the season strong, the Mets have gone into a tailspin in the second half and will miss the playoffs for the sixth straight year.

"I don't think you can sit back and really enjoy this until you're done playing -- or, maybe, enjoy it a little bit in the offseason," Wright said Tuesday. "I'm not programmed, and it's a little odd and uncomfortable talking about something individual like this, when we've had our struggles in the second half and haven't done what I think all of us feel like we were capable of doing. But I'll enjoy it at some point -- probably not tonight."

Wright has a team option for next year, which is expected to be exercised, and could become a free agent after the 2013 season. Wright is in the final season of a six-year, $55 million deal.

Mets general manager Sandy Alderson has made it clear he wants to retain the third baseman, who has become the cornerstone and the face of the franchise. Last offseason, the team let Jose Reyes, who was one of the team's cornerstones along with Wright, leave for Miami.

"David has been here and is the face of the franchise -- has been," Alderson said during an interview on SNY on Tuesday night. "We'd very much like him to stay. I think he wants to stay. I'm sure he wants to know where we're headed and the things that we intend to do to make it a winner. We'll have that conversation at some point."

Wright is batting .307 with 20 homers and 88 RBIs this year. He is now one of four active players who have their team's all-time hits record, joining Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter, Colorado first baseman Todd Helton and Texas infielder Michael Young.

"I doubt it's going to register while I'm still playing but to look back on this whenever I'm done will be special," Wright said. "From as long as I can remember, you work at this game, you love playing this game. First, I'm lucky to be playing this game for a living. Secondly, to be able to accomplish these individual feat it means a lot, but I think I'll be able to enjoy it when I sit back after I'm done playing."

Matt Ehalt

ESPN New York contributor

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