There is a reason Class AA Binghamton Mets third baseman David Wright writes down much of what his manager and hitting coach tell him.
Binghamton Manager Ken Oberkfell spent 16 years as a third baseman in the major leagues. Hitting coach Howard Johnson spent 14 years in the major leagues, most of them as a third baseman.
Wright is considered the New York Mets' top prospect, and having coaches who played his position in the big leagues apparently has been a huge help. Wright leads Binghamton in batting average (.362), games (58), runs (43), hits (79) and walks (36) entering a doubleheader against Bowie yesterday at Prince George's Stadium.
Wright said he scribbles down a lot of what the coaches tell him into a notebook.
"I feel like I learn something new every day," Wright said. "The notes help me remember things I did when I was going well. But if someone on the street found it, I don't think it would make much sense. It's stuff like, 'when batting, go back on the inside of your left knee and onto the balls of your feet. . . . '"
The copious note-taking is an old habit. Wright maintained a 4.3 grade-point average and scored 1,180 on the SATs while at Hickory (Va.) High near Norfolk. He opted for pro baseball after the Mets drafted him 38th overall in 2002.
His learned tutors also try to keep him loose. This includes Wright's role in Johnson's team-wide video game and golf tournaments.
"He is a very special talent," Oberkfell said. "He's got some great ability. . . . Nothing he does surprises me. He is going to be a pretty darn good major league player."