Werth mum on free agency

Werth mum on free agency

PHILADELPHIA -- Jayson Werth's answer was no.

As in no comment.

ESPN baseball writer Jerry Crasnick created a stir Friday when he used his Twitter account to report that Werth had left the Beverly Hills Sports Council and agent Jeff Borris. Attempts to reach Borris were unsuccessful, and Werth brushed off the topic by repeating the word "no" several times and indicating that he had not left his representation at this time.

It should come as no surprise, however, that the Phillies' right fielder has begun researching a potential change with free agency looming after the season. This is Werth's one big chance on the open market, and simple due diligence would suggest he should explore all options at his disposal.

Werth and Tampa Bay's Carl Crawford are the top outfielders prepared to hit the market this winter. Early indications are that both will command salaries of $15 million or more per year. Werth, who the Phillies signed as a free agent on Dec. 19, 2006, has surpassed all expectations over the past four seasons.

When the Phillies signed Werth, 31, he had just lost the 2006 season to surgery on his left wrist. The gambit paid off as the outfielder has hit .281 with 88 home runs and 280 RBIs over the past three-plus seasons.

After going 1-for-4 and hitting a second-inning home run in Saturday's 5-4 victory over the Brewers, Werth is hitting .296.