Werth’s on-field exploits thrust him into spotlight

Jayson Werth made headlines last month when he informed a Sports Illustrated reporter that he would prefer to be left out of the news.

“I don’t want to be written about,” Werth said. “I’m happy to be ignored.”

The lanky right fielder comes across as taciturn throughout the feature, but Werth is happy to talk about baseball. He’ll also offer bits and pieces of who is behind the scruffy beard and intense hazel eyes.

Werth, 31, likes to listen to the Kings of Leon and Metallica on the way home, where he’ll relax by tuning into ESPN’s SportsCenter.

“I’m a fairly normal person,” Werth said. “When I get out of here, I do what other people do when they go home from work. I just kick back. Does everything have to be public information?”

No. But it’s difficult not to write about Werth’s exploits on the diamond. The player Phillies third base coach Sam Perlozzo dubbed “a six-tool player” is the only member of the starting eight who avoided the DL this season.

Werth has had his ups (leads the NL in doubles with 44) and downs (batting .172 through Sept. 20 with runners in scoring position) in his walk year.

“There’s been the good and the not-so-good,” Werth said. “That’s not just for me, but for the whole team. But forget about the personal numbers. It’s all about winning, which is something this team is good at. We play our best baseball in September and October.”

If the Phillies return to the playoffs, it may mean more SI coverage for Werth and his teammates.

“I don’t worry about that,” Werth said. “I don’t need attention from a magazine. Winning a World Series is more than enough attention for me.”

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