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Zimmerman needs surgery, out 6 weeks

Apr 30, 2011, 7:21 PM EST

Updated at 3:48 p.m.

Ryan Zimmerman will have surgery Tuesday to repair a torn abdominal muscle, a procedure that will keep the Nationals third baseman out approximately six more weeks.

Zimmerman, who has been on the disabled list for three weeks since aggravating the injury while sliding headfirst into second base, was not making progress in his attempt to return through rest and rehab. He consulted a second doctor in Philadelphia on Friday, at which point a torn rectus muscle (the six-pack in the abdomen) was diagnosed.

Surgery will take place Tuesday in Philadelphia, with specialist Bill Meyers performing. The Nationals said rehab will begin the day after surgery, and general manager Mike Rizzo said rehab should take six weeks “if all goes well.”

That would put Zimmerman on target to return to the lineup in mid-June, about nine weeks removed from his last game.

“It’s tough,” said, who was hitting .357 in eight games before suffering the injury. “We went through it a couple of weeks trying to get it better. It’s frustrating, but it’s nice to have closure, get it fixed and get working to come back and help this team continue to play well like they have been.”
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  1. nattydread - Apr 30, 2011 at 7:32 PM

    Up to today, the silence on this was deafening.

  2. Doc - Apr 30, 2011 at 7:35 PM

    Like Marquis,Flores, etc. before Zim is getting late, and 2nd diagnoses that appear to be more complete than the primary ones.Time for Rizzo to get a grip on his medical staff!

  3. Anonymous8 - Apr 30, 2011 at 7:41 PM

    Look at all the wasted time that could have been repaired by surgery. Any chance this is from the original injury in September 2010?

  4. Stranded_in_Philly - Apr 30, 2011 at 7:43 PM

    @ DocWell said. That is a very legitimate concern

  5. LoveDaNats - Apr 30, 2011 at 7:47 PM


  6. masnstinks - Apr 30, 2011 at 7:48 PM

    Well – there's one of my questions answered – badly, but answered. I wonder if he will at some point admit how long it has been bothering him – that seems to be how a lot of those guys are. Although – on the other hand, lots of major league-ers miss time every year with "oblique strains" and rest always seems to work for them. I have never heard of anyone having this injury so I guess they saw no reason to think zebras instead of horses.Let the nats fan panic ensue….

  7. Gonats - Apr 30, 2011 at 7:54 PM reading this the rectus muscle is not the oblique like they were saying the injury was. Who's on first and What's on 2nd? Who the heck is doing the diagnosis and how can someone call it an oblique?3 weeks on the DL wasted from what I read. Surgery could have been done 3 weeks ago and he'd be back May 15th to 21st.

  8. JaneB - Apr 30, 2011 at 7:58 PM

    Sending good vibes for his quick recovery. Like others, including Zimm, I wish they'd figured it out three weeks ago. But it sounds like they knew this might be it all along, given the really circumspect way they've been talking. I wish they'd let Bixler in the mix.

  9. BinM - Apr 30, 2011 at 8:04 PM

    Well, that's a gut-punch for the Nationals. I'd guess they move RZim to the 60-DL & hold onto the extra roster spot until it's needed. Crappy news on a otherwise nice day.

  10. Ribuld - Apr 30, 2011 at 8:22 PM

    He's pretty much done for the year. Who's playing 3rd at Syracuse?

  11. greg - Apr 30, 2011 at 8:31 PM

    heysoos i'm tired of seeing bad initial diagnoses of injuries by the nationals' medical staff. this has been an ongoing problem since this franchise got here. it's absolutely ridiculous. maybe we should hire all of the "second opinion" doctors instead. they seem to do a better job.

  12. Manassas Nats Fan - Apr 30, 2011 at 8:52 PM

    Who is the medical staff for the Nats, they have been doing a poor job now for at least 3 years probably longer. Time to bring in new talent there. Needless to say Rizzo and crew would be apologists for the medical staff too. No one in the organization ever takes responsibility for poor performance.

  13. Golfersal - Apr 30, 2011 at 8:53 PM

    According to Phil Wood in Wednesday Golf Talk Live he hinted that the injury was more serious than first thought.It's amazing that it took this long to find out the reason for the problem that seem to stem from Spring Training.It's too bad that they couldn't of gotten this diagnosed then so that Zimmerman could of had surgery in March instead of May and possibly miss half the season.Mark, do you think that this is something that Nat doctors caught weeks ago instead of trying to rehab him and then finding out about this?

  14. Mark Zuckerman - Apr 30, 2011 at 9:02 PM

    My sense is that they (and Zimmerman) knew the likelihood of the tear a couple weeks ago, but both sides felt like it was worth seeing if he could rest and rehab and avoid surgery. Once he tried to start throwing this week, it became obvious surgery was necessary.

  15. Anonymous - Apr 30, 2011 at 9:36 PM

    Typical diagnosis for the Nats by their medical consultants and staff. They finally get the diagnosis and the remedy right nearly a month after the player goes on the DL. You can write off Zimmerman for the rest of this season and there goes the only Nats clutch hitter.

  16. Anonymous - Apr 30, 2011 at 9:41 PM

    "Who is the medical staff for the Nats?" The low bidder, of course.

  17. Kevin Rusch, Section 406 - Apr 30, 2011 at 9:44 PM

    Count me in on the choir – I'm really sick and tired of someone resting longer than originally announced THEN saying they need surgery. Dammit, when was the last time someone just needed 2 weeks to rest that pulled hamstring? 2005? Might as well get LaRoche cut now too, since we all know he's gonna suck until it gets done, but at this rate, he'll suck for another month, then "rest" for 3 weeks, then a rehab assignment where he hits .180, then go under the knife in August, and he'll "be in the best shape of his life" next March in Viera.This crap REALLY gets old. The nats' medical staff better not be on MY death panel.

  18. Anonymous - Apr 30, 2011 at 9:56 PM

    Kevin Rusch–You nailed it, Laroche will be next and there will go another lost season.

  19. SCNatsFan - Apr 30, 2011 at 11:09 PM

    With Morse, Werth and LaRoche struggling to hit 200 and Zimm out 6 weeks this season is doomed. No matter how strong the pitching this offense can't produce a team that can play .500 baseball. I fear another lost season for the Nats faithful. At least with Marquis pitching well he'll fetch someone worthwhile later in the year.

  20. bgib - Apr 30, 2011 at 11:13 PM

    This is sickening. Who's running the training/medical staff for this organization? How can this happen over and over and over again? It's one thing for players to get hurt, it's going to happen, but to repeatedly mis-manage their diagnoses and appropriate treatment is nothing less than inexcusable. With LaRoche looking increasingly like a ticking time bomb, it's yet another season taking on the appearance of making little or no progress.

  21. Sec 3, My Sofa - Apr 30, 2011 at 11:53 PM

    Rectus? It [darn]-near killed us!But good gracious what a bunch of windges we've become. He hurt it sliding into second, and they were hoping to avoid surgery because, bleep, who wouldn't.

  22. bdrube - May 1, 2011 at 12:38 AM

    Between this and the Livan mess I seriously think this organization is snakebit. The old adage says that you make your own luck, and we all thought the Nats would finally start getting some good luck when they jettisoned Leatherpants and brought in a professional GM. Well guess what, the bad luck continues to rain down in droves. On a related note, it is now time for our $126 million free agent to step up and start carrying this team on his shoulders…or he may end up being the personification of the worst luck of all, that which drags the team down for years.

  23. Section 109 - May 1, 2011 at 12:43 AM

    Sec 3, My Sofa–what is a windge? I'm not kidding, I just checked the dictionary.

  24. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - May 1, 2011 at 1:21 AM

    Can Uncle Teddy get a two-for-one discount on this Philly doc? 'Cause I think Adam LaRoche is right behind Zim. C'mon, Mike, quit going to the CVS MinuteClinic for this team's primary medical needs.

  25. Doc - May 1, 2011 at 1:26 AM

    Hey I want to know what a windge is too, Sec. 3, My Sofa. I was thinking that it was a windbag with a hole in it—sorta like the Nats' FO and medical staff!

  26. Anonymous - May 1, 2011 at 1:26 AM

    Watching Werth at the plate I wonder if he'll announce a surprise injury soon too. Seems it's the cool thing to do if you're struggling on this team.

  27. natsfan1a - May 1, 2011 at 1:32 AM

    I hear this guy is available:, and c.r.*.p.

  28. natsfan1a - May 1, 2011 at 1:34 AM

    Also, solely for the purpose of definition.)

  29. Sec 3, My Sofa - May 1, 2011 at 1:42 AM

    Ok, now that is just spooky. We have to stop meeting like ths.

  30. natsfan1a - May 1, 2011 at 1:47 AM

    LOLing here. 😀

  31. Section 109 - May 1, 2011 at 1:47 AM

    Thanks very much Natsfan1a–I'd never heard of the urbandictionary. And LOL (sort of) for Dr. Nick.

  32. natsfan1a - May 1, 2011 at 1:48 AM

    You're welcome, sec109.

  33. Anonymous - May 1, 2011 at 3:25 AM

    Any team that loses one single player and lets that define it has nothing going for it. Look at the Red Sox last year–they lost three top players for most of the season and were still in the hunt until September. Some of their injury issues were similar–Youkilis and Ellsbury, for example. The bottom line is, a good team will step up and fill the gap. Either we have the stuff to do that or we don't. Time for the rest of the guys to take charge. Pissing and moaning about doctors and such ain't going to help a damn thing.

  34. Manassas Nats Fan - May 1, 2011 at 3:32 AM

    Harper got contacts and is hitting like crazy. Just a thought maybe get all the hitters contacts, and presto the hitting problem might get solved.

  35. Kevin Rusch, Section 406 - May 1, 2011 at 3:37 AM

    The scary thing about Harper – he's hit so much and so well up to this point WITH BAD EYESIGHT.That's really like finding out after you drafted Michael Jordan that he had a pebble in his shoe all through college.

  36. SonnyG10 - May 1, 2011 at 4:13 AM

    Ditto what anon 11:25 pm said.

  37. NatsFanTom - May 1, 2011 at 2:11 PM

    Good luck Ryan. We all wish you a speedy recovery.





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