Any time the Phils are playing the Nationals, somebody somewhere has to stir up the old debate about whether or not the mob at Citizen Bank Park should boo Jayson Werth – this is going on for three years by the way. They do, and why shouldn’t they? Werth left Philadelphia to play for a division rival. Enough said.
I like to think the booing in this case is good-natured in spirit anyway, a theory Werth’s own feelings and experiences seem to substantiate. Phillies beat writer for MLB.com Todd Zolecki sat down with 34-year-old right fielder this week and asked him about the fans’ reaction.
"I feel like the right-field fans still appreciate me," Werth said. "They'll come around. Maybe [in] 10 years they'll be good to me. It's all good. I always enjoy coming here, for better or worse. Any time I grab lunch or dinner, people go out of their way to say, 'Thanks for 2008.' It's all good."
You mean to tell me the fans can be appreciative of what Werth accomplished during his four years with the Philies, and shower him with a chorus of boos as long as he’s suiting up for Washington? Booing is like this city’s second language – it’s all about the inflection.
Werth also gave some insight into what it’s like when he returns to CBP in his conversation with Zo.
"When I went out to shag flies in right yesterday, it was like going home to your parents' house after you had gone away to school," Werth said. "I went and played baseball, but it's like coming back after that first year and going back to your old bedroom, you know? I remember this room."
Werth and his “new” teammates were on the wrong end of the scoreboard on Tuesday, thanks in large part to eight strong innings from close friend Cliff Lee. Lee basically made two bad pitches all night, resulting in two solo shots in the 4-2 Phillies win, his ninth of the season.
One of those home runs belonged to Werth, giving the Nats an early 1-0 lead. Philly sang its song as he rounded the bases, and Werth probably enjoyed it. He walked away from the Phillies, forming an alliance with the enemy, and the people here still care enough to get emotional about it.
Check out the rest of Zolecki's entire piece on Werth. Good read.