David Wright sets Mets mark for career hits

David Wright waves to the crowd after his

David Wright waves to the crowd after his fourth-inning infield single against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Citi Field. The hit was Wright's 1,419th, making him the Mets all-time hits leader.(Sept. 26, 2012) (Credit: Jim McIsaac)

The event itself was hardly memorable, a soft ground ball that trickled down the third-base line, not exactly the stuff of legend.

But the significance of David Wright's infield hit at a half-empty Citi Field Wednesday night wasn't lost on the fans, who rose to honor the new Mets' all-time hit leader.

With his third-inning bleeder in a 6-0 victory over the Pirates, Wright moved past Ed Kranepool with career hit No. 1,419, the most ever in a Mets uniform.

"Ten years from now, when I'm telling my kids, it's going to be a line drive,'' said Wright, who collected another hit in the fourth to make it 1,420. "But I'll take it because a hit's a hit.''

Wright, 29, reached the milestone in his 1,256th game, far ahead of the 1,853 that Kranepool needed while establishing the record from 1962-79.

"Numbers are made to be broken,'' Kranepool said by phone earlier this month.

Jeremy Hefner (3-7) bounced back from a disastrous outing to toss three-hit ball in seven shutout innings and Ruben Tejada tied a career high with four hits, helping Wright set the record during a victory.

Perhaps the win helped to ease what Wright had called a bittersweet pursuit of the record, especially considering the Mets' second-half struggles.

"It's very difficult and I feel for him because I know it's not fun going to the ballpark every day seeing the stands empty [for] meaningless games,'' said Kranepool, who visited Wright before Wednesday night's game.

Wright has spent the season etching his name into the record book. This year, he set club records for career walks (614), runs (788) and RBIs (813), adding to a collection that already included the most doubles (321) and extra-base hits (543) in team history.

But the hits record may be the most prominent. To mark the occasion, manager Terry Collins requested an autographed ball. And the fans lingered in their seats past the final out, cheering Wright once more before he left the field.

"This organization means a lot to me,'' Wright said. "I wear the uniform with pride and it's obviously a humbling moment.''

Notes & quotes: Reliever Robert Carson is day-to-day with a left triceps strain. The diagnosis is a relief for Carson, whose first thought upon leaving Tuesday's game was that he'd need surgery . . . Collins estimates there's a 70-percent chance that closer Frank Francisco has thrown his last pitch of the season. Francisco has been sidelined by right elbow tendinitis . . . Reliever Jeurys Familia will get a start during the team's final road trip.

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