Werth loses value in Washington, but ... 

December, 6, 2010
12/06/10
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The first thought most fantasy baseball owners will have about outfielder Jayson Werth leaving the Philadelphia Phillies and heading to the Washington Nationals -- and it's a reasonable one -- is that his statistics will drop as a result of the move, if for no other reason than the change in home ballparks. True, the hitting environment at Philadelphia's Citizens Bank Park is more generous than Washington's Nationals Park, but Werth is a pretty good baseball player regardless of stadium.

Werth finished as fantasy's No. 20 hitter on the 2010 Player Rater, and he finished 23rd the year before. He has averaged 29 home runs and 18 stolen bases the past three seasons; for perspective, consider that Carlos Gonzalez and David Wright were the only big leaguers to reach both of those numbers in 2010, with Matt Kemp and Arizona's Chris Young just missing.

[+] EnlargeJayson Werth
Dale Zanine/US PresswireJayson Werth brings another right-handed bat to the middle of that Nationals lineup.
While a healthy portion of those numbers came in home games in 2010, it also looks like last season's splits were a bit aberrant for the right fielder. In 2010, Werth's OPS was 161 points better in Philly; he hit .270 with only nine home runs in road games. However, in the 2008 and 2009 seasons, Werth actually hit for a better average in road games than at home, and the home runs and OPS were nearly even. For his career, Werth's home OPS is 32 points higher at home than on the road, certainly not a red flag. Also giving credence to what was clearly an odd 2010 for Werth was a horrific .186 batting average with runners in scoring position and a lack of power against right-handed pitching. Neither of those issues were problems prior to 2010, and he should return to the mean.