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Zimmerman scratched with sore shoulder

May 23, 2012, 3:09 AM EDT

Updated at 11:09 p.m.

PHILADELPHIA — Ryan Zimmerman was scratched from the Nationals' lineup less than an hour before first pitch of tonight's game against the Phillies after telling manager Davey Johnson his right shoulder was sore.

Though Zimmerman insisted he could play, Johnson insisted his star third baseman take the night off. The manager said Zimmerman would return to the lineup for tomorrow's series finale at Citizens Bank Park.

"He wanted to play," Johnson said following a 5-2 victory. "I said: 'Let's just let the thing calm down. We're in a war here. We can lose this battle, but I need you for three games in Atlanta.' They're the ones on top, and we need to put our best foot forward down there. Not that I'm slighting this club, but if we've got a chance to nip this thing in the bud, I'm nipping it in the bud."

Zimmerman spent two weeks on the disabled list earlier this season with inflammation in the AC joint of that shoulder but returned on May 8 and had been swinging a potent bat in recent days. Over his last fiveRead more ยป

  1. Get Some Players - May 22, 2012 at 10:28 PM

    Not liking the secrecy.

  2. Steady Eddie - May 22, 2012 at 10:30 PM

    Please make it stop. Someone.

  3. Smatt1001 - May 22, 2012 at 10:34 PM

    Not again. Let's hope it's minor.

  4. D'Gourds - May 22, 2012 at 10:36 PM

    Love Zim, but boy is he fragile.

  5. Steady Eddie - May 22, 2012 at 10:36 PM

    Are we really better off with Tracy at 3d and Lombo in LF? At least with Lombo at 3d we'd have ONE of the two players who was at least moderately suited to the position they were playing.I know, we'd have Tracy who's completely wrong for the OF, instead of two layers who are just both mediocre at the poditions they're in. Don't mind me, I'm just tryna keep the kids offy lawn.

  6. peric - May 22, 2012 at 10:41 PM

    Maybe Davey wanted to give Zim a blow and give Tracy some reps on his birthday. It does add another left-handed bat to the lineup against Halladay.Lombo {L{Harper [L}Tracy [L]LaRoch [L}Desmond [R]Espinosa [L]Flores [R]Zimmermann [R]

  7. carolync - May 22, 2012 at 10:42 PM

    He was 0 for 4 last night with 2 strikeouts but he looked OK at the plate. I don't remember any diving catches. Boy, is this worrisome.

  8. peric - May 22, 2012 at 10:44 PM

    @needham_Chris: Waiting for some genius to propose Stras to closer to save innings, w Wang in rotation.Okay … that's a good one … LOL … still Stras has the stuff to close … and it would limit his innings making him available for the post-season should they get there? It is something to ponder …

  9. Water23 - May 22, 2012 at 11:02 PM

    Hmmm… this is frustrating and starting to remind me of a player the O's had a few years back. David Segui was good but never really as adominant as his stats because he was a frequent no show in the lineup. Here's hoping Zim can shake the injury bug.

  10. Mr. Doggett - May 22, 2012 at 11:10 PM

    I don't think it's an injury. I think this is one of those we are never going to get a straight answer about. Maybe he was just hungover or something. If it was an injury, they wouldn't hide it.

  11. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 22, 2012 at 11:21 PM

    Maybe its as simple as give the birthday boy a start plus he is LH

  12. baseballswami - May 22, 2012 at 11:24 PM

    He did turn his ankle over running the bases the other night……… worry, worry, worry….

  13. phil dunton - May 22, 2012 at 11:28 PM

    If the manager wants to give a starter a blow, he doesn't pull him from the announced lineup one hour before the game. I sniff more shoulder problems. The Nats are famous for sugar coating injuries.

  14. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2012 at 11:40 PM

    I'm thinking it's more like…. 1 hour before first pitch…..Tracey.."Man, can't even get a start on my birthday."….Davey.."I didn't know it was your bithday. Let me see what I can do."

  15. Joe Seamhead - May 22, 2012 at 11:43 PM

    Man , oh man, do I hope you're wrong, phil dunton.

  16. Joe Seamhead - May 22, 2012 at 11:43 PM

    You go, Bryce!

  17. JaneB - May 23, 2012 at 12:27 AM

    I hope NatsJack has it right. I really do.

  18. Theophilus T. S. - May 23, 2012 at 1:11 AM

    Agree w/ NatsJack.Somebody compared Z-man to David Segui — apart from the fact I don't think Zimmerman is hurt, I do believe that Segui was the victim of self-medication.

  19. Section 3, My PFB Hitterish Sofa - May 23, 2012 at 1:41 AM

    @needham_Chris: Waiting for some genius to propose Stras to closer to save innings, w Wang in rotation.Section 3, My PFB Hitterish Sofa said…I think the same could be said for Strasburg — he seems to get pissed off and lose focus for a few hitters when things don't go his way sometimes, which is death for closers. May 22, 2012 2:34 PM Hey, Needham thinks I'm a genius, too!

  20. Section 3, My PFB Hitterish Sofa - May 23, 2012 at 1:46 AM

    Wait, that was the wrong post…Of course, if they moved Strasburg to left field, they'd save his innings for later in the year, and have a spot for another starter. Problem solved! May 22, 2012 10:07 AM

  21. natsfan1a - May 23, 2012 at 2:07 AM

    Hope so. A Goon Squad special.NatsJack in Florida said… I'm thinking it's more like…. 1 hour before first pitch…..Tracey.."Man, can't even get a start on my birthday."….Davey.."I didn't know it was your bithday. Let me see what I can do." May 22, 2012 7:40 PM

  22. A DC Wonk - May 23, 2012 at 3:12 AM

    Davey seeing the big picture: willing to sacrifice a bit against Phillies if it'll help improve odds against Atlanta.

  23. Tcostant - May 23, 2012 at 3:13 AM

    Phil is dead on, you don't pull a guy from a posted lineup unless it's injury or some other off feild event

  24. whatsanattau - May 23, 2012 at 3:49 AM

    Well … Sounds like a good plan to me. Step 1 – rest Zimm. Step 2 – beat Philly. Step 3 – beat Atlanta. What's not to like. Ejax and Hammels are both going to want this one tomorrow. It would be pretty cool to spank him good and sweep. It would be nice to get Ejax the win. He's been cheated out of a few this year.

  25. John - May 23, 2012 at 3:55 AM

    Dear Johnson & Rizzo: If and when Rendon is ready, please move Zimmerman to first base.

  26. peric - May 23, 2012 at 3:59 AM

    Looks like the move made sense for a lot of reasons and didn't affect the offense. Hopefully, Zim improves because this certainly must be affecting his bat. Harper looks as if he is already starting to come on. And LaRoche's bat cooling down significantly. Hopefully, Harper and Morse can provide enough run production down the road. Perhaps Desmond can keep up the torrid hitting … and hopefully not revert to a right-handed Ankiel.

  27. peric - May 23, 2012 at 4:01 AM

    Dear Johnson & Rizzo: If and when Rendon is ready, please move Zimmerman to first base.After two broken ankles (already!) plus two or three surgeries on them? Are you certain Rendon can survive at third base? He looks worse off than the Z-man!

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