A New York Mets season filled with lows was capped with a bittersweet high on Saturday night.
David Wright, the franchise’s all-time hits leader and long-time captain, returned to the starting lineup for the first time in two years after battling a variety of injuries. At the same time, he also said goodbye, bringing an end to a career that will go down as one of the most significant in Mets history.
Wright experienced all of the highs and lows a player can during a 14-year career, which in Wright’s rare case was spent entirely in a Mets uniform. From a team standpoint, he rode the wave from a near World Series appearance in 2006, to six straight losing seasons, all the way back to the World Series itself in 2015, only for the Mets to fall in five games to the Kansas City Royals.
As a player, Wright went from a seven-time All-Star who made the game look effortless, to a man battling physically and mentally every single day to reclaim his career. Reclaim it he did. If only for a weekend in September, Wright has shown us we can all write our preferred ending through hard work and perseverance.
Wright’s sendoff on Saturday was filled with emotions and memorable moments. From his perspective, we’re sure there were too many of both for him to grasp everything that happened. From the outside looking in, we’ve picked just a few special moments that defined David Wright Day in New York.
David Wright takes the field alone
For his entire career David Wright has put his teammates first. On Saturday, they collectively returned the favor, allowing Wright to take the field alone before first pitch. This gesture allowed Mets fans to shower Wright with love, and it allowed Wright to take in the moment.
Daughter throws out first pitch
This is what means the most to David Wright. Family.
There was no better way to start the game than with Wright’s 2-year-old daughter, Olivia Shea, throwing out the ceremonial first pitch to her father. Friday night’s brief pinch-hitting appearance marked the first time Wright’s two young daughters had seen him play in MLB.
If all that wasn’t overwhelming enough, the Mets put together an awesome video tribute.
The captain was clearly loved like few other Mets have been loved.
Reaches on walk
What everyone really came to see was Wright play baseball for the final time in a Mets uniform. He did not disappoint, putting together a classic six-pitch walk in his first plate appearance.
That’s a mighty good career OBP.
Wright also handled a clean chance on the infield, which drew as loud an ovation as everything else on the evening. In his final career plate appearance, Wright fouled out to Marlins first baseman Peter O’Brien. O’Brien was promptly booed for making the play and robbing us of a storybook ending.
Then again, maybe Wright wouldn’t have had it any other way.
That was it. Wright took the field for defense the next inning, before being removed to another ovation.
No team draws more criticism from their fanbase than the Mets. That’s because they tend to earn more criticism than any other franchise. On this night though, the Mets did it right for David Wright.
More from Yahoo Sports:
• Ryder Cup: Americans left scrambling after getting trounced in afternoon session
• Kimberley A. Martin: Rams’ star power strong enough to contend in L.A.
• FBI investigating MLB over dealings with international players
• Pete Thamel: Rapid rise of OSU QB Dwayne Haskins is phenomenal