Sunday, December 5, 2010

Nationals Sign Jayson Werth [update]

Ken Rosenthal and Bill Ladson are reporting that the Washington Nationals have signed former Philadelphia Phillies RF Jayson Werth. The contract appears to be a 7 year deal at $126 million for the 31 year old.

I'm not going to say I told you so, but I TOLD YOU SO! I've been telling people for months that if the Nationals failed to sign Adam Dunn, they would go for Jayson Werth. Nats GM Mike Rizzo has been looking for a viable option in right field for more than a year now, and with Dunn gone, it opens a significant amount of money to sign an excellent offensive and defensive right fielder to a long term deal. The platoon in right field in 2010 of Michael Morse and Roger Bernadina will be no more in 2011 after this signing.

While Werth doesn't put up the power numbers that Dunn is capable of, it still provides significant cushion behind Ryan Zimmerman after losing the protection of Dunn in the batting order. And he is a significant defensive upgrade on the field, as Werth has a great arm and outstanding range.

This long-term signing raises some of the same issues that a long-term Adam Dunn contract would have had, since they're both in their 30s. But Werth's contract is 3 years longer than Dunn was looking for. I'm sure many people will be questioning that move in the weeks to come.

We'll dig into the numbers and whether this is a good signing throughout the week (spoiler: I think it is), because this is simply going to be a huge story in the coming days. It's about time folks, the Nationals have made national baseball news this off-season. Stick with Capitol Baseball throughout the week for more.

[Update - 5:17PM]
Nats will lose their 2nd round pick, as Jayson Werth is a Type-A Free Agent. The Nats 1st round pick was protected due to their record being in the bottom 60% of the league. Though with Dunn signing a contract with the White Sox the Nationals will still have 3 picks in the top 35-40.


  1. Still in shock! Really looking forward to seeing how he mentors some of our young outfielders.