York manager Andy Etchebarren appears in a feature story on Phillies outfielder Jayson Werth in the most recent edition of Sports Illustrated.
From the article:
“Werth’s career didn’t progress as quickly as expected. Baltimore traded him to Toronto in 2000 after his Double A skipper, former O’s catcher Andy Etchebarren, deemed him, Werth says, “uncoachable.” The Blue Jays made him an outfielder. He broke into the majors in 2002 but within two years was sent to the Dodgers; he hit 16 home runs in 290 at bats for Los Angeles in ’04 and was the Dodgers’ starting leftfielder in the playoffs that year.”
So we asked Etch about Werth.
Was he uncoachable?
“As a catcher? Yes. He wouldn’t listen. He knew it all.
“I told him right off the bat, he didn’t have enough arm strength (to be a big league catcher). And I told them we should put him in the outfield before we traded him.”
But when it came to playing, Etchebarren did not have a problem with Werth. He played hard. And he didn’t have some of the off-the-field arguments that he experienced while managing other Orioles prospects like Rick Bauer and Matt Riley.