Aug 20, 2013, 12:35 AM EDT
|USA Today Sports Images|
CHICAGO — Jordan Zimmermann insists he feels fine. There’s nothing wrong with his arm, and the 95 mph fastballs he threw Monday night would seem to confirm that. And the right-hander says his neck, a problem earlier this summer, isn’t an issue right now.
So, what are we to make of Zimmermann’s performance over the last six weeks? After serving as a punching bag for the Cubs’ previously punch-less lineup during an 11-1 blowout loss, the one-time ace of the Nationals staff finds himself in a legitimate, long-term funk.
On July 1, Zimmermann was named an All-Star for the first time in his career. He sported an 11-3 record, a 2.28 ERA and an 0.94 WHIP, all of which ranked among the NL’s best. In eight starts since, Zimmermann is now 3-4 with a 5.30 ERA and 1.59 WHIP.
If he’s fine physically, how does he explain the last six weeks?
“Just pretty much location,” Zimmermann said. “I’m not hitting my spots right now. The fastball’s up. I’ve got to do a better job of locating.”
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...
MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
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