Wright's hitting streak ends at 26
Mets third baseman draws walk in final at-bat in ninth
NEW YORK -- David Wright had one more chance to scratch out another page of history. With one out in the ninth inning of the Mets' 7-3 loss to the Braves on Friday, Wright strode to the plate in search of the hit that would extend his franchise-best streak to 27 games.
But Rafael Soriano never even let him swing.
The Braves reliever walked Wright on five pitches, dousing his last hope of extending history for at least one more day. And so the streak ended at 26 -- still longer than the 24 games achieved by former Mets Mike Piazza and Hubie Brooks, but not even halfway to Joe DiMaggio's elusive 56.
Naturally, Wright was visibly upset after the game. But the streak had little to do with it.
"I'm disappointed we lost, I'm not one bit disappointed that the streak ended," Wright said. "The hitting streak was just one of those things where it was fun while it lasted, but I'm not going to lose any sleep tonight."
It wasn't just talk, as Wright's actions in the ninth inning proved. After refusing to hack at Soriano's pitches, the third baseman worked a walk -- while the scant Shea crowd still in attendance showered the Braves pitcher with boos.
The walk put runners on the corners with one out, when the next batter, Moises Alou, bounced a potential double-play ball to shortstop Edgar Renteria. His team still down seven runs, Wright charged into second baseman Kelly Johnson's relay attempt, forcing an errant throw that sailed into the stands, putting the Mets on the board, and most importantly, keeping the game alive.
And it meant far more to Wright than any hitting streak.
"I just try to go out there and play as if the game was 0-0," Wright said. "Plus that's an RBI for Moises, so you got to go in there and try to break it up, and play the game hard until the last out."
Still, there's no discounting the impressiveness of what ended as the longest streak in Mets history. Wright batted .343 during the stretch, which spanned the final 12 games of 2006 and the first 14 of '07. It was the longest Mets streak to start a season, and made Wright the first Major Leaguer in more than four decades to end one year and begin another with double-digit hit streaks.
Yet all that history disintegrated when the Mets met Tim Hudson, arguably the hottest pitcher in the game. Hudson limited the entire team to just five hits in eight innings, making sure that Wright wasn't the only one leaving Shea with a bad taste in his mouth.
In the second inning, Hudson struck out Wright on a slider that he pounced at too soon. Then, in both the fifth and the seventh, Wright harmlessly grounded out to short.
"It's not luck, that guy's got a lot of skill," said Mets manager Willie Randolph. "There's nothing you can do about a nasty sinker and a split-finger and [Hudson's] throwing in the mid-90s. He's one of the best pitchers around."
So good, in fact, that Hudson easily did what several others before him couldn't.
"It's fun to be a part of, obviously being in the company of Mike and Hubie, it's a tremendous honor," Wright said. "But it's something that you don't think twice about. I'm just trying to have good at-bats, and if I get a hit, great. If not, I'll try to get them next time."
Anthony DiCosmo is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.