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Ex-MLB All-Star Jayson Werth went from baseball to 2024 Belmont Stakes winner

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Though the Philadelphia Phillies did in fact have a 2008 World Series reunion on Saturday, it would appear one former player from that title-winning team had a better place to be. Indeed, the former outfielder was busy watching his horse make history.

Jayson Werth’s Dornoch claims surprise win at Belmont Stakes

Though most Horse Racing fans are likely still reeling from Saturday’s result, reports do in fact confirm that the 156th edition of the Belmont Stakes was won by rank underdog ‘Dornoch’. Clearly a surprise, Dornoch who was jockeyed by Luis Saez was neck-and-neck with Preakness Stakers winner Seize the Grey for the large majority of the race, but on the final turn was able to break away and in so doing, held off the challenges of ‘Mindframe’ and ‘Sierra Leone’ as well. To be clear, Dornoch came into the Belmont Stakes with 15-1 odds, meaning an 8th rank among 10 horses.

Yet, perhaps even more surprising than the Dornoch’s win is who owns the horse, or at least partially: Former MLB All-Star Jayson Werth. The former Philadelphia Phillies star a whopping 1,583 games for four teams during a career that stretched from 2002 to 2017. As mentioned above Werth became a world champion in 2008 with the Phillies but he’s now added another trophy to his cabinet and he had a most interesting response when asked how it compared to the title he won before. “I would put it right up there with winning on the biggest stage,” Werth said. “Horse racing is the most underrated sport in the world, bar none. ...This is as good as it gets in horse racing; this is as good as it gets in sports.”

As for how Werth became a part owner of a horse, the one-time slugger disclosed that it was during a period in 2021 when he was trying to overcome the idleness of retirement. The result? A series of events seemingly lucky events, that led to a 2022 purchase of a 10% stake ($325,000) at Keeneland’s September yearling sale in Kentucky, one of the biggest auctions in horse racing. “I’m extremely lucky to be involved, and the way that I got in on Dornoch is a crazy story,” Werth said. “I went to the right side of the bar instead of the left side of the bar. I just happened to buy the right guy a drink and started talking to him.” With that, the curtain comes down on the Triple Crown and Werth and his co-owners get to pocket the tidy sum of for his part takes home the tidy sum of $1.2 million in prize money.

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