Zimmerman on shoulder injury: “It’s nothing”

Given the injury luck that the Nationals have had so far this season, some might have feared the worst when they heard Ryan Zimmerman was scratched from this afternoon’s starting lineup just prior to first pitch.

But according to both Zimmerman and manager Davey Johnson, the right shoulder inflammation that Zimmerman is suffering is minor, and shouldn’t keep him out for an extended period of time.

“It’s been bothering me a bit just from diving around and jammed it a little bit,” Zimmerman said. “Went to get loose like I always do today and it was a little tight. (Johnson) was going to give me tomorrow off anyway, so just decided to (rest) today, tomorrow and Monday and by Tuesday it’ll be no big deal.

“I really have no doubt by Tuesday, it’ll be fine.”

Zimmerman said he has not gotten an MRI on the shoulder, and there are no plans to undergo any such testing. The injury isn’t thought to be severe enough to warrant it.

The 27-year-old missed about two months with a right shoulder injury back in the 2008 season, but he says this current ailment isn’t at all similar to what he experienced four years ago.

“No, it’s nothing,” Zimmerman said. “It’s something I could’ve played through. It was bugging me a little bit and it’d go away for a couple days. I’ve just been diving all over the place over there. It’s just like a jammed finger, pretty much. Give it a couple days to rest, it’ll go away, and we’ll be good to go on Tuesday.”

Zimmerman felt some discomfort in the shoulder when he was taking some swings before the game, and told hitting coach Rick Eckstein about it. The two then informed Johnson, who made the call about a half-hour before first pitch to take Zimmerman out of the lineup and give him some time off.

With tomorrow’s planned day off for Zimmerman and Monday’s team off day coming up on the schedule, Johnson’s decision to sit his starting third baseman was a fairly easy one.

“He plays hard, and I don’t want to wear him too much down,” Johnson said. “He got treatment and he’s going to miss tomorrow. And then he has off Monday. Hopefully he’ll be ready to go Tuesday.”

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