Wilson apologizes for comments about trade
Shortstop says he did not imply criticism of organization
PITTSBURGH -- Shortstop Jack Wilson sought out members of the media on Wednesday afternoon to issue a public apology for comments he made on Tuesday after learning that teammates Nyjer Morgan and Sean Burnett had been traded to Washington.
"I really didn't sleep last night," said Wilson. "I think some of my comments were pretty harsh. When you're here and you're in the moment and you're talking to guys and everyone is bummed out, you tend to maybe lose your head a little bit and vent. A lot of things I said, I thought about last night when talking with my wife, and they were pretty inaccurate, I would say.
"I definitely don't want to be that guy who is butting heads with the organization or causing any type of negativity. I apologize for that. I'm definitely passionate about winning, about being a Pirate, and sometimes it comes out in a negative way. For that I apologize for going against the organization."
Wilson has seen countless teammates dealt in midseason trades since joining the Pirates in 2001. He voiced some frustrations when outfielder Nate McLouth was traded four weeks ago and again, more pointedly this time, after Tuesday's trade was finalized.
"They are building something," Wilson said on Tuesday. "Unfortunately, none of us here are kind of seeing that direction. We understand that it's a business and that they have to do what they have to do to make the team better. Hopefully, it does. I just know there are a lot of people in this clubhouse who aren't going to be here, so we don't care too much about it."
Wilson went on to suggest that management has given up on the 2009 season and questioned when the organization will start winning consistently.
"It's hard for guys who have been here and have seen these exact trades happen and it mean absolutely nothing," he said. "I've been here for nine years and seen these trades two or three times every year and still haven't had a winning season. So those haven't worked. You just hope that these do."
Wilson's decision to apologize for his comments did not come at the urging of anyone within the organization, including general manager Neal Huntington. However, after reading his comments in print on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning and discussing his reaction with his wife, Julie, Wilson did not need any prompting.
"I said, 'Honey, I think I got myself in trouble again,' " Wilson said. "I've done this before. When you see what you said, you say, 'Wow, that guy is a jerk.' I don't want to be that guy. That's not what I want to represent."
Wilson also clarified that the intent behind what could be seen as a criticism of management was merely a rash reaction to losing friends.
"I've lost a lot of them," he said. "At some point it just blows up in your face. I don't think I handled it the right way. I was unprofessional. I have strong feelings about it. I'm not going to say that that's different. But there is definitely a better way to talk about it or take it rather than going against your own team.
"It's passion," he added. "I love playing the game. I want to be here when this turns around. Sometimes you just get so passionate about it that it comes out in a negative way."
Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.