Jayson Werth's days in Philly could be numbered

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Andy Martino writes that Jayson Werth’s Phuture is uncertain:

The Phillies rightfielder arrived at spring training yesterday with
long hair and a thick beard, entering the final season of a two-year,
$10 million contract. With the Phillies saying they have limited
payroll flexibility beyond the approximately $140 million currently
committed, Werth might have priced himself out of Philadelphia.

“I think everybody knows the situation,” Werth, 30, said yesterday in his first public comments on possible free agency . . . Werth said that his agent had engaged in “preliminary” talks with the
Phillies on a contract extension, but that they had amounted to
“nothing, really.”

Cliff Lee had “preliminary” talks with the Phillies too. He was shipped out of town, like, a week later.  I don’t think that Werth will get the same treatment — he’s quite popular in Philly and it’s not like the Phillies can just go out and grab the a rightfield equivalent of Roy Halladay to take his place — but it’s going to be a little complicated.

My guess: Philly will look to lock him up with some sort of backloaded deal in which the real money kicks in after Raul Ibanez’s, Brad Lidge’s and maybe even Ryan Howard’s money comes off the books in 2012. 

Joe Maddon: “I have a defensive foot fetish.”

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The Cubs’ defense — or lack thereof this year — has been a topic of conversation as it could help explain why the team hasn’t played at the elite level it played at last year.

Manager Joe Maddon tried to go into detail about that but ended up channeling his inner Rex Ryan. Via CSN Chicago’s Patrick Mooney.

Well then.

The Nationals have scored 62 runs during four Joe Ross starts

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If, in the future, Joe Ross ever complains about a lack of run support, point to his first four starts of the 2017 season.

Ross started on April 19 in Atlanta against the Braves, on April 25 in Colorado against the Rockies, on April 30 at home against the Mets, and on May 23 at home against the Mariners. In those games, the Nats’ offense scored 14, 15, 23, and 10 runs respectively for a total of 62 runs, or an average of 15.5 per start. Ross was the pitcher of record for seven, eight, 10, and 10 runs for a total of 35 runs (8.75 runs per start), which would still make him the major league leader in run support by that restrictive standard.

Among qualified starters — Ross did not qualify — entering Tuesday’s action, the Rockies’ Antonio Senzatela led the way according to ESPN, averaging 7.11 runs of support in nine starts. The Rockies scored double-digit runs in only three of those starts, oddly enough.

Per the Nationals, the 62 runs of support for Ross is a major league record in a pitcher’s first four starts of a season.