Is Werth Back?

It might be time to start recognizing that after 50-60% of the season completely wasted with the bat, Jayson Werth might be back. It’s not like he’s hitting spectacularly at the moment, but he appears to be back to his old self. He no longer appears lost at the plate, fearful of striking out, missing a slider by 5 feet. In fact, he looks like Jayson Werth.

In his last 34 games and 146 PAs, which is a little above 20% of a season, he has hit .286/.363/.485. That’s an OPS of .848 over 1/5 of the year. That is NOT a “hot” streak by any means for a guy of Werth’s capabilities. But it might be about what most people expected when he was signed. Sure, some people expected a .900+ OPS, but he only did that in 2010. From 2007-2009, in one of the best hitters parks in the league, his OPS was .870. Take away Citizens’ Bank Park, add in the fact that he has to face the Phillies pitchers, would you expect more than an .848 OPS over a whole season? Probably not.

Meanwhile, if you look over in Chicago, Adam Dunn continues to struggle. In his last 147 PAs, his OPS is .517, with no signs of finding himself. I don’t say this to gloat, but rather to compare how Werth has emerged from his struggles, while Dunn continues to flounder. It seems to me that Werth has emerged from his malaise, and is just the player that was signed a little less than a year ago.

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