Good afternoon DoD readers, and welcome to today’s District Daily! Yesterday was a crazy day for the Washington Nationals, as they beat the St. Louis Cardinals in thrilling walk-off fashion. Before they continue their series against the Cards tonight, get caught up on all the latest Nats news with some great Washington Nationals articles from around the web below.
In today’s Daily, Jason Fletcher of Rant Sports explains why he believes Jayson Werth is the most valuable player in the history of the Nationals. As Jason notes in his article, the Nationals signed Werth to a massive, highly-criticized contract after the 2010 season. Since then, however, Werth has become an invaluable member of the ball club, and his once-criticized deal is now considered one of the reasons the Nationals rose from the bottom of the National League to perennial World Series contenders.
The Nationals have several players that have made a strong impact on the team and the city, with home-grown stars such as Bryce Harper and Ryan Zimmerman getting the bulk of the “Face of the Franchise” recognition. But in his four years with the club, there’s no doubt Werth has been one of, if not the most valuable player in team history. One thing’s for certain, he’ll be one of the team’s most important players in 2015.
Also in today’s Daily, MLB.com’s Paul Hagen gives us a behind-the-scenes look at Statcast, Major League Baseball Advanced Media’s new interactive broadcast system that made its debut in last night’s game against the Cardinals. Needless to say, it’s really, really cool.
Be sure to check out the articles below, they’re definitely worth a read. And as always, stay tuned to DoD for all your Washington Nationals needs.
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Jayson Werth Is the Most Valuable Player In Washington Nationals History
On Dec. 5, 2010, Jayson Werth signed the 14th richest contract in the history of baseball when he inked a seven-year, $126 million deal with the Washington Nationals. At the time, general manager Mike Rizzo got ripped apart for what was deemed a massive overpay by Nationals fans and the media alike. To that point in his career, Werth had only played the better part of three full seasons at the major league level, and he was already 31 years old. Signing the contract meant that the Nationals were willing to pay Werth an average of $18 million a season until he is 38 years old. If his value is based solely on his production on the field, then yes, it is an enormous overpay. However, Werth’s value to the Nationals franchise goes far beyond on-field production.
Werth was coming off the two best seasons of his career in 2009 and 2010. In 2009, he hit .268 with 36 home runs and 99 RBIs as he helped lead the Philadelphia Phillies to their third straight National League East division championship. In 2010, he upped his average to .296, to go along with 27 bombs and 85 RBIs as the Phillies claimed their fourth straight division title. Werth couldn’t have timed having the two most productive seasons of his career any better.
Lights, camera, action: Behind the scenes of Statcast
WASHINGTON — Last week at Fenway Park, Red Sox outfielder Mookie Betts made a spectacular catch to rob Nationals batter Bryce Harper. The broadcasters couldn’t do much more than ooh and aah and show the replay as many times as they had time for.
Those limitations began to dissolve Tuesday night at Nationals Park with the official unveiling of Statcast, Major League Baseball Advanced Media’s bold leap into a high-tech future, when previously unimaginable aspects of the game will be measured, compiled and compared.
Viewers would have learned that Betts reacted in .059 of a second. That he ran 103.25 feet to make the catch. That he reached a maximum speed of 17.85 mph. And, intriguingly, that his “route efficiency” — based on a scale in which 100 represents perfection — was 95.45. Read full article here.