David Wright relishing Mets’ role as go-between for players, front office


PORT ST. LUCIE — To understand where the Mets are heading as a franchise, listen to the words of David Wright.

The now-retired captain has that new role with the club as special adviser. Friday was a good day to watch him at work.

In the morning, Wright sat at the far end of the clubhouse with the pitching staff, telling stories and having a good time. Later, he spent one-on-one time with Jacob deGrom, who has yet to sign a contract extension with the Mets.

Seemingly every player being considered for an extension has already signed one, except deGrom.

The Cardinals’ Paul Goldschmidt has a new five-year deal set for $130 million, while the Red Sox’s Chris Sale is looking at a five-year, $150 million extension. That is the financial playground for deGrom. The Mets are going to have to step up and pay the man. There have been extensions handed out everywhere this spring.

“I’ve made it abundantly clear that with my new role, I guess technically I’m considered front office, but I’ve also told the front office that I am very good friends with Jake and that I want it to work out for both sides because I love this organization and I love Jake, so hopefully something can come of it, but each player has to make their own individual decision,’’ Wright told The Post at First Data Field on Friday, when the Mets were hammered 15-5 by the Cardinals.

Wright wants what is best for deGrom and the Mets. That means a long-term deal for the Cy Young winner.

Wright gives general manager Brodie Van Wagenen another way to reach out to players and to understand their thoughts. It’s a smart move.

“I think the benefit that I have and I think when Brodie approached me early on about doing something like this, I was hesitant because as much as I love the game and I have so many personal relationships with the guys in that clubhouse, it was weird to me,’’ Wright told The Post. “Brodie said he would like to utilize that to our advantage, because I want to be players-first, and you having those relationships I think will help the role that I perceive with you and this team.’’

As Van Wagenen told The Post in early February about the players: “They don’t work for us,’’ he said. “We work for them, to give them every bit of effort they are giving us.’’

Wright is part of that players-first approach.

“Knowing what it’s like to play and trying to communicate that between the players and the front office, so that it really does feel like a family, I think is a benefit,’’ Wright said.

“From a player’s perspective you always want to have open lines of communication and a good relationship with the front office and I think that is something I can help portray.’’

To really make it a players-first organization, though, players have to be paid first and that is on Mets ownership.

“With Brodie’s history, he knows what it is like being as close to some of the greatest players in the game,’’ Wright said. “He knows what it’s like from a player’s perspective and he’s bringing those same values to a front office role, which excites me.

“That’s how you get that tight, cohesive unit, good or bad when you are open and honest with a player.

“I feel like the guys hopefully trust me enough to be able to talk me and if there is an issue maybe they feel more comfortable coming to me and me being the bridge or vice versa. I don’t want the players or the front office to feel hesitant in trusting me because I have the relationship on both sides.’’

Wright was named the Honorary Ambassador of the 2019 PGA Championship at Bethpage Black and was with Ozzie Smith, who was the chairman last year. Both posed in front of the historic Wanamaker Trophy.

“He’s a better infielder and player,’’ Wright said of the Wizard. “He’s a better golfer as well.’’

Now it’s all a new game for Wright, working as a bridge between the players and the front office.