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Werth to begin rehab assignment at Potomac tonight

Jul 16, 2015, 11:42 AM EDT


Jayson Werth will begin a rehab assignment with Class A Potomac tonight, the Nationals’ minor-league affiliate announced, possibly positioning the veteran outfielder to return from a fractured left wrist before the end of the month.

Werth, out since getting hit by a pitch May 15 in San Diego, had been targeting an August 1 return from the disabled list. That timetable, though, may be expedited if he’s able to make it through these early rehab games with no issues.

The 36-year-old outfielder had surgery two weeks after initially getting hurt; it took that long before a specialist at the Mayo Clinic was able to detect two small fractures in his wrist. At the time, Werth said he hoped to return in August.

Werth has made significant progress over the last few weeks, resuming baseball activities, swinging a bat and working in the outfield. Given his prolonged absence, this rehab assignment could still take awhile. He’ll need to gradually work his way up from playing a few innings at a time to playing full games back-to-back, all while getting as many at-bats as possible.

Still, Werth’s eventual return from injury should be a boon for a Nationals lineup that has been reduced to bare bones at times in recent weeks, with fellow regulars Ryan Zimmerman (foot), Anthony Rendon (quadriceps) and Denard Span (back) also currently on the DL. The Nats have yet to field a lineup this season with all eight of their projected Opening Day starters.

Werth began the season on the DL while recovering from right shoulder surgery, and he was only starting to get his swing together when he got hit by the pitch in San Diego. Overall, he’s hitting .208 with a .294 on-base percentage and .287 slugging percentage in 27 games played, though he had posted a .910 OPS over his last nine games before suffering the wrist injury.

  1. Doc - Jul 16, 2015 at 11:51 AM

    if the Nats were wise they’d have JDub get an extended rehab (40-50) ABs so that he really is ready when he walks through the club house door.

    • alexva6 - Jul 16, 2015 at 11:55 AM

      Tyler Moore seconds this opinion, albeit for selfish reasons

    • Soul Possession, My Sofa - Jul 16, 2015 at 12:50 PM

      How does that work, extended rehab?

  2. zmunchkin - Jul 16, 2015 at 11:54 AM

    Great News.

    Let’s hope he does not rush back and takes plenty of ABs on rehab to get his timing back.

  3. langleyclub - Jul 16, 2015 at 11:54 AM

    The time limit for a rehab assignment for a position player is 20 days. So, with his rehab assignment starting today, Wertth must be back on the Nats active roster by August 5, assuming that he does not get hurt again. Would expect Werth to return sooner.

    Given how long he has been out and that he had no Spring Training, I would expect this rehab assignment to last at least a week, which would mean that Werth could return for the series in Pittsburgh a week from this weekend or the following series in Miami. Naturally, his actual return date will depend on how he feels and how he plays.

    • homeparkdc - Jul 16, 2015 at 12:07 PM

      Being overly optimistic, this spring Werth was at Potomac for only 3 games and 6 AB with the shoulder after ST. Realistically, how many ABs can he accumulate until the @Pittsburgh series starts?

  4. natsfan1a - Jul 16, 2015 at 12:09 PM

    Heh. I thought I had a scoop when I saw my email from the P-Nats regarding the rehab assignment. I should have known better than to try to scoop the Z-Man. 🙂

    • natsfan1a - Jul 16, 2015 at 12:10 PM

      Oh, and on a related note that is not about me, I’m glad to see that J-Dub is moving along with his rehab. 😉

  5. Hiram Hover - Jul 16, 2015 at 12:30 PM

    Very happy to hear it!

  6. ArVAFan - Jul 16, 2015 at 12:52 PM

    Clancy–see that gnome? The one with the bat? OK, you can pat it–but gently, please.

    Go Werth! Can’t wait to see you back in Nats Park, and serenade you with my usual off-key rendition of Werewolves of London.

    • Joe Seamhead - Jul 17, 2015 at 1:47 PM

      I will bellow out an Ah-Hoooo!

  7. Theophilus T.S. - Jul 16, 2015 at 12:55 PM

    If all we get is the same edition that came back from Potomac the last time I’m not very enthused about the return of JW. I think Werth dictated the timetable for his return the last time and he wasn’t ready. I don’t want to see that happen again. A week at Potomac and a week at Harrisburg seems about right to me — at least ten games. If we’re going to find out he’s not ready to contribute in a significant way I’d rather it be in meaningless minor league games than in major league games that are going to determine the outcome of the season.

    • Soul Possession, My Sofa - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:03 PM

      As I recall, they were verging on desperate at that time. Now, they could use him, but they have guys in place who can keep the team above water.

      • bowdenball - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:57 PM

        Not with Denard Span and Ryan Zimmerman out they don’t. They have to use Taylor to replace Span and Robinson to replace Zimmerman, leaving them with Tyler Moore’s .661 OPS and horrendous fielding in left.

      • jd - Jul 16, 2015 at 2:13 PM


        The assumption is that Span returns fairly quickly at which time if you play Harper, Span and Werth in the outfield as was planned at the beginning of the year Taylor has to sit. I say, let’s cross that bridge when we get there.

    • Bruxtun - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:05 PM

      You don’t always “find out” from minor league games, because you’re playing against minor leaguers.

      • veejh - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:35 PM

        I think I remember Werth raking in his last rehab assignment. We know how that played on the major league level.

      • Hiram Hover - Jul 16, 2015 at 2:12 PM

        In his rehab assignment earlier this year, Werth was 1-6 with three BBs.

        The one hit was a HR, but I still wouldn’t call that raking. So few ABs he barely had time to get out the yard bags and survey the leaves.

      • veejh - Jul 16, 2015 at 5:57 PM

        My memory (which isn’t that great) has failed me.

  8. paulfortier - Jul 16, 2015 at 12:58 PM

    Just read the Texas Rangers released Ross Detwiler, yesterday.

    • Soul Possession, My Sofa - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:04 PM

      Yes, and he had to clear waivers for that, which means nobody wants him on a major league contract.

      • masterfishkeeper - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:27 PM

        Actually, I think it means nobody wanted him on his current contract. I agree that he’s unlikely to get a MLB deal, however.

      • DaveB - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:53 PM

        The Rangers now have to pay his ($3M+/yr.) salary, and his stats against lefties are still pretty good, so I could easily see someone picking him up for a ML bullpen if he is now willing to do that, given that they would get him for the ML minimun.

      • virginiascopist - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:56 PM

        I think he might get a major league deal from some team desperate enough to think he might be of some use (in the bullpen). He probably thinks he can get a deal, or he would have accepted the minor league assignment for the Rangers.

  9. micksback1 - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:09 PM

    I am hoping Jayson is healthy come the Fall, if he is, watch out, I believe he wnats to redeem himslef from last October. I am not sure about R Zim, I have a terrible feeling his decline may be permanent. And, i am assuming Rendon comes back healthy. Offensively, the Nats would be in great shape with a healthy Rendon and Werth and may not need that other bat. I still mainatin that the BP needs 2 more arms.

    nats106…I love your post on yesterday’s thread, I responded to it.

    • texnat1 - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:59 PM

      It doesn’t make much sense to assume that 36 year old Werth is going to come back better than ever this Fall–and be better than he was last October (when is was healthy), while at the same time writing off the 30 year old RZim, who has a discernible injury.

      • therealjohnc - Jul 16, 2015 at 3:00 PM


      • micksback1 - Jul 17, 2015 at 10:33 AM

        here is why i disagree with you, when werth was healthy he had a positive impact. RZim never got it going from April 1 until when he was put on the DL. if there was an injury then shame on the Nats for not putting him on DL sooner. However, I do not think that wad the case as Zim was healthy coming out of the Spring, his defense a his new postition as exceptional which leads me to conclude his abilities at the plate may be in decline. Age has nothing to do with it as pplayers decine at different rates.

  10. veejh - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:34 PM

    Good news, I guess, as long as that bat comes alive. I’m not expecting Span type of defense, just the bat.

  11. adcwonk - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:39 PM

    Werth was, indeed, off to a horrendous start in the Spring — but let’s not look solely at the .208 average.

    While in his first 13 games he batted .146, the rest of the season — his last 14 games before the injury — he batted .264; over his last nine games he batted .313; his last four games he was 5-for-15 (.333) with a HR. So, it sure seemed like he was coming out of his slump.

    So let him get his 13 games in, in rehab, and then . . . 😉

  12. jd - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:44 PM

    We have 4 regulars out of the lineup. The imminent return of any of them is welcome news. Werth was a productive player last year and I have no reason to believe that he forgot how to hit. Sorry but I’d still rather see his name in the lineup ahead of Moore and Robinson.

  13. jd - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:47 PM

    By Sunday Werth should be playing 9 inning games, by next week he should be playing back to back and by next weekend all things being equal he should be in the Nats lineup. Unfortunately this means that Michael Taylor will have his playing time reduced, I would have much rather it be someone else.

    • DaveB - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:56 PM

      I think you’re correct assuming that Span is back by then, which hopefully will be correct.

    • jfmii - Jul 16, 2015 at 1:57 PM

      Taylor’s playing time depends on Werth AND Span’s health.

  14. NatsLady - Jul 16, 2015 at 2:04 PM

    Looks like all Nats draft picks through round 20 have signed except

    • Nationals 14th-round pick, LHP Mack Lemieux (Jupiter, Fla.) remains unsigned and his future is unclear. Lemieux originally signed with Florida Atlantic out of high school, but informed the Owls this week that should he not sign, he will head to Palm Beach (Fla.) CC.

    The signing deadline is 5 p.m. tomorrow.

    • DaveB - Jul 16, 2015 at 2:26 PM

      I would take that to mean that the Nats still have a shot to get him signed by tomorrow … I was thinking that they still had 100-200K of “cap room” after the Tyler Watson signing, so I would view it as good news if they can use that to pull in Lemieux.
      Also. I’m curious to see if they get the last couple of college seniors signed, including the Rice C (Reeves).

  15. scnatsfan - Jul 16, 2015 at 2:43 PM

    RE: Detwiler – someone will sign him, he still has good numbers against lefties. Thornton is still kicking around with that ‘limited’ skill.

    RE: Werth – C’mon, how long do you have to rehab to be able to foul away enough pitches so you can walk or get deep into the at bat?

  16. tcostant - Jul 16, 2015 at 2:59 PM

    Good for Werth not saying, I’m on the All-star break, lets start Friday.

  17. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 16, 2015 at 3:00 PM

    Werth was spot on in his rehab timetable that he told my friend 2 weeks ago.

    I’m going to listen to the game tonight and cringe through the radio voice of Bryan Holland.

  18. rlndtln - Jul 16, 2015 at 7:43 PM

    Where is Rendon?





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