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Stark on Jayson Werth Replacements and the Big Truck

Jan 11, 2010, 8:08 AM EDT

ESPN's tapped-in columnist Jayson Stark yesterday dropped some disappointing words on anyone holding out hope that Jayson Werth will re-sign with the Phillies this off-season. 

Here's one Phillies source on the odds of his team finding a way to keep Jayson Werth: "No chance. None. Zero." In the end, it might not even be the annual dollars that will force the Phillies to move on. It's their unwillingness to go beyond three or four years for a player who will turn 32 next May.

Pretty much what we understand to be the case based on reports lingering since the Phils were bounced from the NLCS, but that does sound fairly emphatic. The Beard appears to be as good as gone. 

Stark did throw some cold water on a few of the names that were bandied about as potential RF replacements last week, calling reports of the Phillies' interest in Magglio Ordonez, Pat Burrell, and Andruw Jones "highly exaggerated." The log Stark throws on the fire is the name of Jeff Francoeur.

Stark indicates the Phils are aggressively trying to retain Jose Contreras, but that Ruben Amaro Jr says they've contacted a lot of relievers so far.

Solid overall column by Stark, worth a read from top to bottom.