FLUSHING, N.Y. - In the midst of an early-season skid, Jayson Werth sat down for a conversation with bench coach Randy Knorr in the Nationals clubhouse Monday night.
Werth, who entered yesterday's game 1-for-14 on the season with seven strikeouts, felt like he was happy with his swing, but was starting to get frustrated with the results, or lack thereof. It was during that talk with Knorr that Werth received what he considered some words of wisdom.
"We were watching video and looking at stuff and talking, and he said that someone told him one time that the first 100 at-bats of the season are to get comfortable and everything else happens from there," Werth said. "And that's really true. You get in the middle of the season or whatever, and those first 100 ABs, they happen in the blink of an eye."
That message, combined with one that he got during a pregame chat with manager Davey Johnson before Tuesday night's game, helped the ultra-competitive Werth ease up on himself a bit. He went to the plate yesterday with a calmer state of mind, and delivered a 4-for-5 performance with two RBIs in the Nats' 6-2 win.
The four-hit game was Werth's first since June 27, 2009.
"I just focused on being more relaxed up there," Werth said. "Looking back, that's something I've done in the past, and hopefully I can continue to do that."
Werth has been pleased with his swing since reporting to spring training, saying that he feels like he's found the proper swing path this year, something he lacked last year when he struggled so mightily in his first season in Washington. But on top of that, it's rewarding for Werth to finally get some hits to drop and knock the zero off the front of his 2012 batting average.
"I felt like I've been swinging the bat pretty good since the middle of January, really, but haven't had a lot to show for it," Werth said.
"Really, the start of the season, it is what it is. But I remember back in Philly, those teams would always start slow and finish hot, and I think that can definitely happen. It's not always how you start, it's how you finish."