BOSTON — Mets manager Mickey Callaway said he’ll try to get David Wright pinch hit appearances during the last week of the season, but it will take some planning.
Wright — who starting Sept. 25 will be an active player for the first time after 28 months and three surgeries — requires significant behind-the-scenes work to prepare his body to play in a game, so he will need a warning before potential cameos against the Braves and Marlins.
“It’s going to be something that I need to give him at least a few innings heads-up,” Callaway said. “We’ll know how the game is going and things like that. He’s definitely going to need time to prepare.”
If Wright is available as a pinch hitter, why wait till the last week of the season to activate him?
“I think they wanted to do it during the homestand,” Callaway said. “So when he got at-bats, the fans could see it.”
Callaway said he doesn’t expect to use Wright in the field at first, with the overarching goal of the week being to “make sure he gets ready for that Saturday.” Wright is scheduled to start at third base on Sept. 29 against Miami, and Callaway wasn’t sure if Wright would play in the season finale Sept. 30.
In the meantime, Wright will partake in normal pregame activities like batting practice and fielding grounders, but probably won’t face live pitching in simulated settings while the Mets are on the road, Callaway said.
The news of Wright’s imminent, temporary return brought a buzz to the clubhouse, Callaway said.
“That he’s going to get activated? Yes,” Callaway said. “I think there’s also the other side of that, knowing what the future holds for David. I’m sure they’re happy that he kind of knows now and it won’t be in that purgatory that he’s been in, trying to figure it out. I think they’re definitely excited that he’s going to be out on the field again.”
Another Frazier-ump dust-up. Todd Frazier was confused as everybody else when during his walk-off home-run trot Thursday, he saw home-plate umpire Tom Hallion standing on the plate, surrounded by the Mets, who were waiting to celebrate. But a day after making slight contact with Hallion as he stepped on the plate — a necessary act to complete the game — Frazier laughed it off.
“I think he wanted to jump around,” said Frazier, who noted he has a good relationship with Hallion. “If I was thinking he was maybe taking a charge, I could have tried dunking on him. If Reyes made a basket [with his hands] I could have jumped over him. That would’ve been the best celebration ever.”
Major League Baseball didn’t think it was so funny and is reviewing the incident. Joe Torre, MLB’s chief baseball officer who oversees the umpires, has a history of stressing professionalism between the lines.
Callaway said he asked the other umpires about it between games of the doubleheader, and they told him Hallion was goofing around, excited he was able to go eat dinner. As home-plate ump, Hallion didn’t have to work the second game.
Tweeted the MLB Umpires Association: “Good job, Tom!”
Frazier wasn’t sweating it.
“He’s a good umpire. Maybe just a silly mistake,” Frazier said. “I’m not looking to get him fined or suspended. It was what it is.”
Frazier was ejected by a different umpire for arguing balls and strikes on Tuesday. He also recently duped an ump with a fake baseball on a non-catch in the stands, and has had other tiffs about the strike zone this season.
Wright boosts ticket sales. David Wright’s announcement on Thursday that he would start one last game for the Mets on Sept. 29 has caused a spike in asking prices on the ticket resale market for an otherwise meaningless game against the Marlins. Before the announcement, the average asking price for that game at Citi Field had been $65, according to TicketIQ, which monitors the secondary market. As of Friday morning, that figure had risen to $320. The lowest-priced seat rose from $5 to $115.
— NEIL BEST