If he does partake in the festivities (and signs are pointing to yes, if he's voted in), it would be the second time in his career he's honored with doing so. The last time was in 2006, when he slugged 22 homers and finished second to Philadelphia Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard.
Upon hearing this news, there have been mixed reviews from fans on blogs and various social media platforms as to whether or not Wright should participate. For those who are against it, the most common reason is that it took him months to get his swing back in 2006.
After seeing quite a few comments pointing to that, I decided to jog my own memory and take a look at his season splits from that season. In 339 first-half at-bats, Wright hit .316/.386/.575 with 20 homers and 74 RBIs. But in 243 second-half at-bats, he put together a .305/.375/.469 line with only six home runs and 42 RBIs.
I was expecting a bigger disparity between his batting average and on-base percentages from the first half to second half, but the power drop off is considerable; Wright went from hitting a home run once every 16.95 at-bats to hitting one once every 30.38 at-bats. Thankfully, in 2006, his lack of power didn't burden the team as much because teammates like Carlos Delgado and Carlos Beltran picked up the slack for the eventual National League East champions.
After taking time to think about it, I believe David Wright should participate in the Home Run Derby, if the opportunity presents itself. I understand why others would not want him to; unlike 2006, the 2013 New York Mets are very much dependent on Wright's power production.
However, it's been seven years since Wright first participated in the event, and a lot has happened since then. He's older and wiser than he was in 2006, and he knows himself and his swing more than ever before in his professional career. Therefore, I'm not as concerned with this event affecting his swing as I would have been seven years ago. Also, since he's done it before, he knows how to prepare and what to expect before, during and after the event.
So, if Wright is chosen, I say go for it. Having him be very involved in this year's All-Star game activities would be fantastic since Citi Field is playing host. He's gone through so much as a player over the last seven years that I don't think he'll let something like the Home Run Derby affect his results on the field once the Mets start the second half of their regular-season schedule.
Matt Musico's Mets opinion has been featured on MLB Trade Rumors, MetsBlog, Amazin' Avenue and Rising Apple. He also provides his analysis and opinion on the rest of Major League Baseball at his personal blog, On The Way Home.
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