Friends in High Places: Jayson Werth

By |  April 4, 2024 0 Comments

Jayson Werth was a big-game player with many playoff highlights. Perhaps his most memorable highlight came as a Washington National in 2012. Werth dramatically ended Game 4 of the National League Divisional Series against St. Louis with a solo home run in the 10th inning. The homer came on the 13th pitch of an at-bat that included seven foul balls, all with two strikes.

Photo: Associated Press

Photo: Associated Press

After jumping straight from Glenwood (Ill.) High School to professional baseball in 1997, Werth made his Major League Baseball debut for the Toronto Blue Jays in 2002. Werth was one of MLB’s most surprising players in 2004 when he batted .262 with 16 homers and 47 RBI in 89 games for the Los Angeles Dodgers.

In 2008, with the Philadelphia Phillies, Werth rose to the occasion and batted .444 in the World Series against Tampa Bay. The next season, he was an All-Star as he hit 36 home runs and led the league in plate appearances. Werth set a Phillies record for most home runs in a single postseason, including two solo shots in Game 3 of the World Series against the New York Yankees.

In 2013, Werth had a monster season with the Nationals, finishing ninth in MVP voting, batting .318 and ending the season in the top five in on-base percentage (.398), slugging percentage (.532) and on-base plus slugging (.931).

Werth retired from baseball in 2018, after a successful 15-year career in the majors, to become an organic farmer in Macoupin County, Ill.

“I play a lot of golf,” Werth says. “It gives me something to do, and I get to go to cool places. I’m trying to figure out this post-baseball life. It keeps me moving, it keeps me going. I’ve come to love really nice courses. I appreciate a course that is looked after well. My (course) at home is Bradenton (Fla.) CC. It’s a Donald Ross course, it’s always in good shape, it’s a nice small community course. The greens are always rolling 12 to 14. It makes a difference. A good, well-kept course is important. I try to talk to (superintendents) and pick their brains a little bit. I know nothing about taking care of the course so it’s always interesting to hear what they’re talking about.”

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About the Author: Seth Jones

Seth Jones, a 25-year veteran of the golf industry media, is Editor-in-Chief of Golfdom magazine and Athletic Turf. A graduate of the University of Kansas School of Journalism and Mass Communications, Jones began working for Golf Course Management in 1999 as an intern. In his professional career he has won numerous awards, including a Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association (TOCA) first place general feature writing award for his profile of World Golf Hall of Famer Greg Norman and a TOCA first place photography award for his work covering the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. In his career, Jones has accumulated an impressive list of interviews, including such names as George H.W. Bush, Samuel L. Jackson, Lance Armstrong and Charles Barkley. Jones has also done in-depth interviews with such golfing luminaries as Norman, Gary Player, Nick Price and Lorena Ochoa, to name only a few. Jones is a member of both the Golf Writers Association of America and the Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association. Jones can be reached at sjones@northcoastmedia.net.


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