MILWAUKEE - After the Nationals got blown out in the first game of their series against the Brewers and gave away the second game with a late bullpen meltdown, Jayson Werth remained silent, stewing over his thoughts about the losses as he poured over video of the games. On Wednesday, after the Nationals lost 6-4 to the Brewers in a game where they were just short in almost every area, Werth was ready to talk.
The Nationals finished an eight-game road trip 1-7, falling to seven games under .500 for the season. They'll play at least another 2 1/2 weeks without Ryan Zimmerman, and probably more without Adam LaRoche. And though Werth wasn't ready to spell out what he thought the Nationals needed to do different, he did sound a vague alarm.
"I've got some ideas, obviously, and some thoughts, none I really want to share with the world," Werth said. "But I think it's pretty obvious what's going on right here. ... I'm not going to get into it right now. It is what it is. It's unfortunate. We're a way better ballclub."
Werth did point to the fact that the Nationals are still starting young players in several spots, especially up the middle of the diamond, and while he said it's important to develop those players, the Nationals need things to change.
"I've felt (we were close to winning) the whole year. We have been close the whole time," he said. "We just can't get over the hump. We get right there, and we have opportunities, chances to win games, and we don't win 'em. We should. But good ballclubs are resilient. Good players are resilient. They bounce back. I believe in these guys in here. We've got a great group of guys. We've got a lot of talent. We just need to keep going. A lot of these guys are kind of still learning. We've got to make sure they continue to develop, regardless of whether they're winning or losing, because I think that's important to the future of this club. But things need to change."
I don't know if Werth is suggesting that results need to improve, or personnel needs to change, but he wanted to make it known he wasn't pleased with the current situation. And because he's making $126 million over seven years, he already holds some sway in the organization. We'll have to see how things develop from here.