Results tagged ‘ Jayson Werth ’
The U.S. military bombarded Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega with heavy metal music to force him from his compound and surrender in 1989. Britney Spears’ music has blared from merchant ships to scare away pirates off the horn of Africa.
The Nationals have chosen “Somewhere Out There” by Linda Rondstadt and James Ingram to annoy their enemies.
They have been playing pop ballads and other soft and sappy music during opposing teams’ batting practices this season. There is no shortage of schmaltzy music, so the playlist has varied every day. But the past couple days the Phillies have been fortunate (or unfortunate) to hear Patrick Swayze’s “She’s Like the Wind,” Starland Vocal Band’s “Afternoon Delight,” Anne Murray’s “You Needed Me,” Dan Hill’s “Can’t We Try,” and Spandau Ballet’s “True.”
“We’ll take care of that,” Ryne Sandberg said before today’s game against the Nationals at Nationals Park. “We’re going with the silent treatment at our place.
“It’s bush league. And irrelevant. What’s the point?”
Some of the Phillies are amused at the sappy tunes. Some could not care less. Others want mercy.
“I don’t think there’s any malice behind it,” Justin De Fratus said. “I think it’s funny. They played that Feivel Goes West song yesterday. If anything it’s a change of pace from some of the stuff we hear every day. I’ve got to sit there and listen to Drake every day. And it’s not about Drake. It’s every day I’m hearing top 40.”
“I mean, come on,” Jeff Francoeur said. “If you did it one time it’s funny. But we come here so many times.”
The Phillies actually had a bigger beef than the music. They feel they get on the field for batting practice late at Nationals Park compared to other ballparks, giving them less time to get ready between BP and first pitch. But according to the Phillies’ and Nationals’ respective media guides, batting practice starts only five minutes later for opposing teams at Nationals Park than at Citizens Bank Park.
“It’s very inconvenient,” Sandberg said. “That will be another adjustment. That seed was planted about six weeks ago.”
Nevertheless, the yacht rock continues.
“I didn’t even notice it,” Nationals outfielder Jayson Werth said with a hint of a smile. “But it’s nice soothing music they’ve got going on here. It’s nice for the fans at the ballpark before the game. Yeah, maybe get a beer, a pretzel, enjoy BP.”
They have started Hunter Pence, Marlon Byrd, John Mayberry Jr., Domonic Brown, Delmon Young, Ben Francisco, Darin Ruf, Laynce Nix, Grady Sizemore, Nate Schierholtz, Roger Bernadina, Michael Martinez, Ross Gload, John Bowker, Casper Wells, Ezequiel Carrera and Tony Gwynn Jr. in right field since Werth signed a seven-year, $126 million contract with the Nationals in Dec. 2010. But with the Phillies announcing today that Brown will open the 2015 season on the 15-day disabled list with left Achilles inflammation – his DL stint can be backdated to March 27, which means he could be activated as early as April 11 – that list could grow to 18 by Opening Day.
The candidates to replace Brown include Jordan Danks, Jeff Francoeur, Brian Bogusevic and Russ Canzler. Sizemore, who started 11 games in right field last season, remains a possibility.
“We’re very open-minded,” Ruben Amaro Jr. said this morning at Bright House Field. “We don’t have a set right fielder right now.”
Here is a closer look at the candidates to replace Brown:
Danks. He might be the favorite. First, he already is on the 40-man roster and has options remaining, which comes into play. Second, he might play the best defense. Danks has hit .227 with eight home runs and 26 RBIs in 344 at-bats in his career with the White Sox. He is hitting .250 (9 for 36) with one home run, five RBIs and .746 OPS this spring. If Danks is the Opening Day right fielder it would give the Phillies six left-handed hitters in the lineup with Carlos Ruiz the only right-handed bat and Freddy Galvis a switch-hitter.
The Nationals broadcasters last night suggested a player or two in the Washington dugout might have been involved in the Phanatic’s four-wheeler stalling before the game. Jayson Werth swears it wasn’t him.
QUESTION: The Nationals broadcasters were talking like you might have been involved in some sabotage?
WERTH: It was already done by the time I got over there. I tried to help him out a little bit. I’m not very mechanical.
QUESTION: So you’re not one of those guys fixing his cars in the winter?
WERTH: What’s that called when you hijack a car?
QUESTION: Hotwire it?
WERTH: I don’t know how to hotwire anything. No, I didn’t have anything to do with it unfortunately. It would have been funny if I did. (laughs) I watched the video and he’s sitting there talking to me, “I can’t get the thing to start.” It was funny. I saw it. It was hilarious. The whole thing was funny.
“You say the damndest things when you’re lying in a hospital bed post-op,” he said. “They’ve got some pretty good medicine. But I don’t necessarily take back what I said.”
Werth played for the Phillies from 2007-10, helping them win the 2008 World Series, 2009 National League pennant and four National League East championships. But Phillies fans have been booing him since he signed a seven-year, $126 million deal with the Nationals in Dec. 2010.
He said some of those fans crossed the line May 6 when they jeered and mocked him after he broke his left wrist during a game at Nationals Park. Werth had surgery May 7 at the Mayo Clinic, and almost immediately sent an e-mail to The Washington Post. In it he wrote, “After walking off the field feeling nauseous knowing my wrist was broke and hearing Philly fans yelling ‘You deserve it,’ and, ‘That’s what you get,’ I am motivated to get back quickly and see to it personally those people never walk down Broad Street in celebration again.”
Werth said today he has cooled off completely since he fired off the e-mail. He also said he contacted some of his former teammates and members of the Phillies organization soon after the e-mail hit the Internet.
“It was a few guys I have a world’s worth of respect for,” Werth said. “I contacted them and said, hey, no disrespect. I explained the situation.”
Werth wouldn’t say, but those conversations probably went something like this: It’s not you, it’s those fans in the stands that heckled me.
“You go through something like that. You’re pretty bent out of shape about the way it went,” said Werth, who was one of the most respected and well-liked players in the Phillies clubhouse while he was in Philadelphia. “As time goes on you don’t feel as strongly. I’ve definitely been contacted by a lot of people from Philadelphia, fans I’ve come to know and love over the years. They’ve reached out to me. For what it’s worth, you learn to forgive and forget.
“I’ll finish that with saying that I would not give back any of my time I spent here in Philadelphia. They were some of the most sacred years of my life. There is a mutual respect for this town and these people, and especially those guys over there (in the Phillies dugout).”
They have not been in last place this late in a season since July 8, 2005.
Thirteen times the Phillies had a chance to move to .500. They lost eight times. Six times they had a chance to move over .500. They lost every time. This is a team that boasts Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels in its rotation. It has Jonathan Papelbon as its closer. It has Hunter Pence, Shane Victorino, Jimmy Rollins, Placido Polanco and Carlos Ruiz in its lineup.
“Sometimes, there’s just no answers. We’re in that area right now where I don’t have any answers.” – Jimmy Rollins.
The Phillies came within one out from suffering their second shutout loss in four games (and their third shutout loss in eight games) in last night’s 5-1 loss to the Padres. After today’s series finale against the Padres, the Phillies play three games against the Diamondbacks in Phoenix and four games against the Cubs at home before hitting the road for six games against Atlanta and Washington.
The Phillies are in the middle of a stretch of 20 games in 21 days with 16 of those games on the road.
They are 7-8 this season, while the first-place Nationals are 12-4 and the second-place Braves are 10-5.
The Phillies have scored just eight runs in four games. Their 2.0 runs per game average and .492 OPS each rank 29th in baseball. (Only the Twins are worse in both categories.) The Phillies also have just four extra-base hits, which is last.
Charlie Manuel sounds more than a little concerned about his team’s inability to hit the ball hard, and it’s easy to see why after watching these last four games.
But it got me wondering how many other hitters would sell their first-born child for a multi-hit game right about now?
“I’m happy for Hunter,” Werth said. “That’s an enviable position to be in. I know firsthand what that’s like.
“Immediately, when I heard it I thought about him going from Houston to Philadelphia. I don’t know how much fun they were having over there (in Houston), but I do know how much fun those guys have over there, what that clubhouse is like, the chemistry, the camaraderie. I know how well a guy like that will fit in. I immediately thought about how much fun he was going to have. I’m happy for him. He’s a good player.”
Werth knows Pence a bit from being on the 2009 National League All-Star team. He said he has spoken with Pence a couple times since his arrival in Philadelphia.
“He seems like a good fit,” he said.
So no more wistful thoughts about Philadelphia or how it should have been him? The Phillies essentially got Pence because they did not find anybody to replace his production in right field. They started the season with Ben Francisco before moving to Domonic Brown.
“Not really,” Werth said. “It was more like, I knew what he was about to get himself into. It kind of made me smile.”
Jayson Werth is back in Philadelphia.
Cheer or boo? Hey, let’s vote!
Update: Werth heard mostly boos as he walked to the plate in the top of the first inning, but he tipped his cap as he stepped into the batter’s box. Automatic standing ovation. Werth heard more boos as he ran to right field in the bottom of the first, but as he got closer he received another standing ovation.
Where’s the pop?
He mentioned Chase Utley, Jayson Werth and Pat Burrell in a lengthy discussion. Utley is hurt, Werth is in Washington and Burrell is in San Francisco. Each of them had high on-base percentages, and each of them knew how to work counts. They also could drive the ball. The Phillies certainly have been missing that lately. The Phillies have just nine extra-base hits since April 9, which is last in baseball. (The Cardinals are first with 42. The Marlins are second-to-last with 14.) Those numbers are a bit misleading because some teams have played nine games in that span while the Phillies have played seven. But here’s what is not misleading: the Phillies also have a .290 slugging percentage in that span, which is last in baseball.
The Phillies, whose 38 extra-base hits for the season rank 25th, have a serious power outage.
But before folks say, “It’s a long season,” remember, it’s Manuel expressing these concerns.
“I know people are going to say, ‘Well, you’ve got the starting pitching.’ Yeah, that’s part of it,” Manuel said. “But at the same time, usually when you talk about a World Series team or something like that, you’re talking about a top-notch team. I’m not saying we don’t have that, but we could have it. It’s going to take some work. We’ve got to improve in some areas, and we’ve got to hope our players live up to their career averages and their career performances.”
A couple random thoughts:
- When is John Mayberry Jr. going to get a start? Raul Ibanez has started every game this season. Ben Francisco has started all but one. Ibanez has hit .189 (7 for 37) in his last nine games. Francisco has hit .111 (2 for 18) in his last five. The Phillies are facing left-handers Randy Wolf and Chris Narveson the next two games. Mayberry has been great off the bench, but he’s got to play to stay sharp. Manuel expressed his concerns countless times this spring about his outfield’s defense. He lamented the fact yesterday his corner outfielders haven’t hit for power. Mayberry can play defense and hit for power. Throwing him out there at least once a week wouldn’t seem to be the worst thing in the world right now.
- One second Danys Baez is pitching in a big spot — replacing J.C. Romero and remaining in the game to face Greg Dobbs on Friday — the next second the Phillies are bringing in long man Kyle Kendrick in a tie game and Baez is the last man standing in the bullpen. How quickly things change.
- Who knows if this is just a rough stretch for the offense or not, but what if this is who the Phillies are? Say they are a light-hitting team. You can’t look around and say, “Well, here’s an obvious way to upgrade the lineup.” Manuel just has to hope things return to normal and Utley comes back and stays healthy. Otherwise they’re really going to need the rotation to be superheroes.