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Phils add depth to outfield with Werth

Phils add depth to outfield with Werth

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PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies added some depth to their outfield with the signing of Jayson Werth to a one-year contract on Tuesday.

Werth, 27, spent all of the 2006 season on the disabled list with an injury to his left wrist. He last played for the Dodgers in 2005 and hit .234 with seven home runs and 43 RBIs in 102 games. In '05, Werth was placed on the disabled list twice for a total two months.

"Jayson is a young outfielder with a combination of power and speed," Phillies general manager Pat Gillick said in a statement. "He's had some injuries over the past couple years, but we think he has tremendous athleticism and we're very happy to have him in a Phillies uniform. He's a great addition to the club."

In '04, Werth gave the Dodgers a spark by hitting .262 with 16 home runs and 47 RBIs in 89 games. He also was 4-for-14 with two homers in the National League Division Series.

"I'm looking forward to playing in Philadelphia," Werth said in a statement. "To be grouped in with a bunch of good young hitters, it feels like a great fit. I've heard a lot about the fans' passion and I'm excited to get going. Also, it meant a lot to be reunited with Mr. Gillick."

Werth was originally a first-round pick (No. 22 overall) by the Orioles in the 1997 First-Year Player Draft when Gillick was Baltimore's general manager. Werth has a career average of .245 with 25 home runs and 106 RBIs in 232 games for the Blue Jays (2002-03) and Dodgers (2004-05). He has also stolen 17 bases in 20 career attempts.

Additionally, Werth can play all three outfield positions, having made 96 career starts in left, 65 in right and 29 in center. He has 14 career outfield assists.

Werth is a third-generation Major League player. His grandfather, Dick "Ducky" Schofield played in the Major Leagues for 19 years (1953-71) and his uncle, Dick Schofield, played for 14 years (1983-96). Werth's stepfather, Dennis Werth, played four seasons in the Majors from 1979-82. His mother, Kim Schofield Werth, competed in the U.S. Olympic trials in the long jump and 100 meters.

Andy Jasner is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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