One of the more underreported stories in the early 2014 season for the New York Mets is David Wright's lack of power. Since he came up with the Mets back in 2004, Wright has been a good power bat in the middle of the Mets' lineup. Wright is still hitting in the middle of the Mets' order in 2014, but his power has vanished seemingly overnight.
In his first 31 games this season, Wright is hitting .279 with only one home run and 17 RBI's. Wright also has only six doubles on the year, so he has only produced seven extra base hits over his first month of action. After 31 games last season, Wright was hitting .299 with 23 RBI's and produced 13 extra base hits (five doubles, three triples, and five homers).
The dip in power is very problematic for a Mets' team that has very little power to begin with. The Mets only have 20 home runs on the season, which is the fifth worst mark in the major leagues. The Mets are also dead last in major league baseball in terms of extra base hits, with only 72 over their first 31 games. While Wright is not the only reason the team's power numbers have suffered (Curtis Granderson's struggles didn't help), the Mets need more production out of their captain.
Even though Wright is still driving in runs, he is posting the worst power splits of his early career. Wright's slugging percentage is .349, well below the .514 mark he posted in 2013. Wright's isolated power, or ISO, is also around .100 on the season, well below his career marks.
The Mets have to hope that Wright's lack of power is simply an early slump, and not a sign that he is entering the decline portion of his career. Wright, who is 31, has already struck out 31 times on the season compared to only 97 K's in 2013. An increase in strikeouts and a dip in power could be a sign that Wright's bat is slowing down just a bit. While many figured that the next two years would be the end of Wright's prime seasons, the Mets can't afford to have Wright decline rapidly already. Wright is still under contract for another six seasons after this one, and if he declines early the Mets will be paying a lot of money to a below average third baseman.
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