In the first two games of this weekend's three-game set with the San Francisco Giants, Washington Nationals' outfielder Jayson Werth is 4 for 8 with a solo home run and three singles, two of them RBI hits.
Since returning for a short rest and a cortisone shot in his right shoulder to ease the inflammation in his AC joint, the Nats' 35-year-old outfielder is 8 for 19, (.421/.500/.684) with two doubles, a home run, four walks and five Ks in six games.
So far in August, the NL Player of the Month in July has put up a .319/.414/.468 line.
On Saturday afternoon, Werth connected for two RBI singles in his first two at bats against Giants' starter Tim Lincecum, bringing Denard Span in with a line drive to right in the bottom of the first and lining to center to score Anthony Rendon with two down in the second.
"Jayson had a couple perfect base hits with guys in scoring position," Nationals' manager Matt Williams said after the 6-2 win in Nats Park. "Just the other way to the right-center field gap. DIdn't try to do too much, just hit the single over there when needed."
Werth improved to 6 for 26 career vs Lincecum, with two home runs off the right-hander. His 2 for 4 night against Tim Hudson on Friday left him 17 for 44 (.386/.449/.750) vs the veteran starter with four doubles and four home runs off Hudson in 49 plate appearances. He's 2 for 5 with a double against Sunday's starter Ryan Vogelsong in their respective careers.
Williams said a good deal of the Nationals' outfielder's success is tied to his preparation.
"I just think his approach -- he understands the opposing pitcher and what he's going to try to do and what he wants to do and he also hits well to the situation, whatever that situation is," Williams told reporters.
"So, that calls for a base hit back through the middle or the other way and simply taking a single and that's what he did. [Friday] night he got the head out on a breaking ball and hit it over the fence, but that's kind of what it called for in that position. We're down by a couple and we need an extra base hit and he got one. He's looking for a double, or to drive a baseball to his pull side, so he hits to the situation really well."
On the year, in his fourth season in the nation's capital, Werth has a .285/.376/.441 line with 29 doubles and 13 HRs in 118 games and 503 PAs.
He's back in right field this afternoon for the series finale with the Giants.
• Here's the Nationals' lineup for the rubber match with San Francisco in Washington, D.C.'s Nationals Park: