WASHINGTON — Not many players hit a hot streak coming off the disabled list, but Jayson Werth had a good start in his first game back on Monday, crushing a home run and flipping the bat.
His teammates were equally fired up for his performance, especially starting pitcher and fellow disabled list returnee, Max Scherzer.
“Oh, it was great to have grandpa back,” Scherzer told the MASN post-game crew, barely containing his glee. “We get him back, he gets two hits and hits a home run, so he’s feeling sexy about himself even at his old age.”
“He feels great, so it’s great to see him back in our lineup,” Scherzer said with a grin.
Werth, 38, is the oldest person on this team and the last National born in the 1970s. Werth is even older than reliever Ryan Madson, who retired for a few years before making a comeback.
While Werth was rehabilitating his foot injury, he was working out with players in the Nats system who weren’t born when he was drafted by the Orioles in 1997.
But just because Werth has been-there-done-that with most parts of professional baseball, he still finds joy in the game.
“That’s what dreams are made of, right there,” he told MASN in reference to his home run. “That felt pretty good. It was good to be back with the guys tonight and a big win.”
It’s hard to call missing three months of the season “a good thing,” but Werth freely admitted that his time and struggle to return gave him a nice dose of perspective that makes him appreciate being back.
“I was fired up [to be back]. You go down to the minor leagues and you get some hard lessons and it’s tough baseball down there…After playing down in the minor leagues a little bit, it’s eye-opening. You forget what it’s like down there.
“You forget what you’re playing for. But when you love the game, you love the game, and it’s all about being here, being with the guys…it’s good to be back with my teammates.
“We’ve got a long, hard stretch in front of us and this team is built for October. We’re eyes on the prize. We want to win.”