Wright shakes off butterflies in spring debut

Mets third baseman easing into action in Grapefruit League

Wright shakes off butterflies in spring debut

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- David Wright made his much anticipated Grapefruit League debut in Friday's 12-7 loss to the Nationals. He didn't disappoint, slapping the first pitch he saw from Nationals starter Lucas Giolito into right field for a single. His second time up, he waited on the second pitch from reliever Felipe Rivero before lining a second single to left-center.

He went 2-for-3 and scored a run.

"I'll take this," Wright said. "Because obviously in game-type situations these guys are well ahead of me as far as the speed of the game and getting the at-bats.

"So for me it was about putting together good at-bats. I was able to get the [first] hit and get some confidence going early. I think I had much better at-bats after that; especially that last one. I got to see some pitches and was really pleased with how the day went."

Mets Spring Training: Tickets | Schedule | More

The plan all along has been to bring Wright along slowly this spring after he played just 38 games in 2015, after being diagnosed with spinal stenosis. He batted .289 with five home runs and 17 RBIs.

Wright scored Friday all the way from first base on a Yoenis Cespedes double, showing no ill effects as he rounded the bases.

"It was a good test right out of the gate," Wright said. "Maybe not ideal, but I'm glad that I passed. I probably felt like I was moving a lot faster than I was. I'm glad I could check that off the list. I got three at-bats, got a play at third, ran the bases, so it was a good day.

"You don't want to be too aggressive, but at the same time it's the first game, even though it's Spring Training, and you're a little nervous, you've got the butterflies, and you want to go out there and produce."

He will not participate in any road games in Florida, avoiding the long bus rides and shortened time to stretch. But he is scheduled to play in eight Spring Training games as well as some more Minor League appearances and two exhibitions in Las Vegas to close Spring Training.

"I want to get at-bats," Wright said. "I want to get in game situations. But at the same time I've got to be aware that I can't just play back-to-back nights Sunday and Monday. I've got to be a little smarter [than that]."

Glenn Sattell is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.