Jayson Werth’s Visit to Allentown


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Last night was the 100th game of the IronPigs season. Part-time Phillies pitcher and prospect Severino Gonzalez was pitching, prospect Aaron Altherr is on fire, and they were honoring prospect Jesse Biddle for being pitcher of the week in the International League (AAA) last week. Oh, and they had fireworks on this beautiful Friday night. So obviously tickets were going to sell anyway, regardless of what else went on.

It’s not uncommon for the other teams to have players do rehab assignments in Allentown, so the fact that the Nationals sent a player to Allentown to rehab for the night wasn’t a big shock. That the player was Jayson Werth caused quite a stir though, certainly overshadowing everything else I mentioned about this game. If you want to get a Phillies crowd riled up, just bring up the 2008 World Series Champion and current Washington Nationals left-fielder in conversation. Fans either love him or hate him up here, and that was the case on this Friday night. Every at-bat was a mixed reaction, with about half the crowd cheering him, and about half the crowd boo’ing him. From the moment that the bearded one stepped on the field to warm-up, the reactions began.

On the field, it was a largely uneventful night. Werth hit in the three hole, going one-for-four on the night, ripping a sixth inning single up the middle and scoring a run that tied the game at the time. He was hit by a pitch in the foot in the tenth inning, and was removed for Tony Gwynn Jr. to pinch-run. He appeared fine, and ran to first without looking hurt, so it appears he was removed more so because it was extra innings. He did make a few plays in the outfield without incident as well, though he wasn’t tested on any hard throws from left.

Up until this year, I might have been one of the fans who wanted to let Werth have it. I never begrudged him signing a seven year, $126 million deal. In fact, had he not signed that, I might have begrudged him. I was just mad he went to Washington. It’s been five years though, and the Phillies are a really bad team. Werth was a great player for the Phillies, and a huge part of the team becoming a winner from 2007-2010. At this point, I choose to remember Werth as a huge part of Philadelphia finally winning a championship, and becoming a baseball town again. Hopefully the 36 year old will be able to finish his career strong and be remembered for how important he’s been in both Philadelphia and Washington.

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