After undergoing surgery early Tuesday on his broken left wrist, Washington Nationals right fielder Jayson Werth will likely miss the next 12 weeks. If all goes as expected, Werth could potentially rejoin the Nationals’ lineup mid-August.
During Spring Training with the Dodgers in 2005 Werth first broke the same wrist, though the injury was not deemed serious enough to keep him out of the lineup. He’d play in 102 games that season (batting .234/.338/.374 with 7 HR and 43 RBI in 395 plate appearances) before team doctors realized that he had severely torn a ligament during the initial injury. Werth would miss the entire 2006 as a result and there was a question whether he’d be able to play again.
It would seem the break in his wrist this time around – reportedly the ‘other side’ of his wrist from the previous injury – was clean as there was no ligament damage found. Richard Berger, the surgeon who saved the ligament in 2005, was one of the doctors consulted at the Mayo Clinic before surgery was performed, according to some additional details passed along by Mark Zuckerman.
Werth had a disappointing first season in Washington in 2011 – batting just .232/.330/.389 over 649 plate appearances – after signing a big free agent contract the previous winter. Thus far he seems to have been turning things around in 2012, hitting .276/.372/.439 in 113 plate appearances to date. He’s been a positive influence in the clubhouse as well, especially with the youth on the team’s roster.